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Food

Lyndey Milan’s Family chicken pie

Preparation time
30 mins (pastry 15 mins, pie filling 20 mins) + 15 mins freezing pastry
Cooking time
45 mins + 5 mins resting
Serves
4

Another perfect dish with our featured Chardonnay from Tinklers. Peachy and generous yet showing style and restraint, it ticks the boxes with good balance, harmony, depth and drive.

INGREDIENTS

¼ cup (60ml) extra virgin olive oil

1 large or 2 small leeks, thinly sliced

250g button mushrooms, thinly sliced

750g chicken thigh fillets, sliced

1 tbsp Dijon mustard

¼ cup (60ml) oloroso sherry or dry marsala

½ cup (125ml) chicken stock or consommé

1 tbsp cornflour

2/3 cup (160ml) buttermilk

2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves

125g frozen peas

200g fresh or drained, canned corn kernels

 

Rough puff pastry (makes 500g)

225g (1 ½ cups) plain white flour, preferably unbleached

½ tsp fine salt

225g ice-cold butter, coarsely grated

100–125ml iced water

METHOD

1. For rough puff pastry: place flour and salt in a large bowl. Gently stir in butter, leaving small lumps of butter in the mixture). Make a well in the centre, add 100ml iced water and use pastry scraper to just combine. Bring dough together with your hands. Add more water if necessary.

2. Roll out the pastry on a floured surface to make a rectangle about 1.5cm thick. Keeping the longer side of the rectangle parallel to the bench, fold both ends into the centre, like a book-fold. Then fold one side over the other to close the book. Turn it 180º, roll it out thinner again, keeping the rectangular shape and refold as before. Repeat one more time. Wrap in plastic wrap, refrigerate until just firm (20–30 minutes). Can be refrigerated for 3 days or frozen for 3 months.

3. Make chicken filling while dough resting: heat half oil in a very large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add leeks and cook, stirring often, until soft. Add mushrooms and cook until tender. Remove from the pan.

4. Increase heat, add remaining oil to the pan and cook chicken, sprinkled with salt, stirring frequently until browned. Remove from the pan. Add mustard, sherry and stock to the pan, stirring to scrape up any residue and boil. Dissolve cornflour in ¼ cup buttermilk, whisk in until boiling, add remaining buttermilk and thyme and bring to the boil. Return chicken and mushrooms to the pan, bring to the boil, add peas and corn. Season to taste. Remove from the heat.

5. Cut pastry in two, one piece slightly bigger than the other. Roll out the bigger piece to fit a 23cm x 4cm pie tin. Prick all over with a fork and place in freezer. Pre-heat oven to 200ºC (180ºC fan-forced). When frozen after 15 minutes, line the pastry with baking paper and fill with beans or rice and blind bake in the oven for 10 minutes. Remove the baking paper and beans. Protect the edges of the pastry with foil then return to the oven for a further 5–10 minutes to crisp the base.

6. Fill with chicken mixture. Roll out the remaining pastry and cover the pie, cutting an air vent in the middle. Brush with milk
(or egg yolk) and place in oven and cook for 45 minutes or until golden. Remove and rest 5 minutes before serving.

Food
Preparation time
30 mins (pastry 15 mins, pie filling 20 mins) + 15 mins freezing pastry
Cooking time
45 mins + 5 mins resting
Serves
4

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What grows together, goes together Wunderbar lamb and Mitchell Family wines.
Words by Paul Diamond on 7 Jan 2018
The Clare Valley is one of Australia’s most underrated wine regions, which is hard to fathom given it produces some of the finest Rieslings and intensely concentrated red wines in the country. No doubt, the pull of the Barossa has a lot to do with the underestimation of the Clare, but, if you can resist the urge to turn right at Gawler and stay on the A32, you’re in for a treat.  In addition to its wine cred, Clare is uniquely beautiful. The open landscape is a sea of wheat fields sprinkled with eucalypts and stone cottages beneath powder blue skies. 
Heinrich’s Wunderbar  You’ll also notice a few sheep along the way, as Clare, like much of Australia, was Merino country. But around 1959 when wool exports declined, families left in droves. One of the few that stuck with it were the Heinrichs of Black Springs and fifth generation Ben, along with his wife, Kerry and five children, continues to farm sheep on the family’s original 810ha property just east of Clare.  But while the sheds, tractors, machinery and utes all make this look like a stock standard farm, one look at the sheep and you realise Ben does things a bit differently to his ancestors.  Practically bald and with long tails, Ben’s sheep are a breed that sheds its wool, chosen as part of his humane, minimal intervention philosophy. This is underpinned by his adherence to the Humane Choice farming principles of which he is the only certified producer in Australia. “With no wool, we can give our sheep a better life, as there’s no mulesing, tail docking, crutching or shearing,” Ben explains. “My sheep are truly free range, paddock raised, no feed lots and we try to minimise human interaction with them as much as possible.” When it comes to conventional industries, sheep farming is close to the top. The practices are well entrenched over generations and traditions are not easy to break, especially when there are mouths to feed.  So why undertake such a radical change? For Ben, it was the knowledge that the ways of the past were not going to work. “Dad was running a self-replacing Merino flock and it wasn’t going so well,” Ben recalls. “Personally, I wasn’t cut out for it, I couldn’t see myself shearing, and Dad saw the writing on the wall. It was either going to be sheep with no wool, or no sheep at all!” So Ben, backed by his dad, started Wunderbar. They’ve since gone from strength to strength, now selling directly to butchers and chefs around the district and into Adelaide. Fans of their meat remark on how tender, flavoursome and lean it is, while chefs love to cook with it. High praise indeed.  A Delicious Seed Word of Ben’s lamb is spreading and one chef that sings Wundebar’s praises is Guy Parkinson, owner of Seed Winehouse +Kitchen in Clare. Guy and his partner, Candice, have run Seed since 2014 after travelling through Clare and deciding it was the place to set up shop. Seed is now a food and wine destination, drawing people from all over to sample Guy’s creative, trattoria-inspired cooking paired with Candice’s take on the Clare wine scene. The couple had been Hunter-based, where they had a significant following of loyal winemaking food lovers, and this pattern has repeated in the Clare. 
The Mitchells Part of the Seed appreciation society are the Mitchells, who run the acclaimed Mitchell Wines. Led by second generation Andrew and Jane, they work with their children, Hilary, Angus and Edwina, to produce beautiful expressions of Watervale Riesling, Semillon, Shiraz, Cabernet and Grenache under the Mitchell and McNicol labels.  The Mitchells have been in Clare since 1949 when Andrew’s father purchased land featuring an orchard, a dairy and a small vineyard. Andrew was born and bred on the property and after school, returned to the family business.  “I came back home and thought that making wine was better than working for a living,” he says with a cheeky smile. Most of the wines the Mitchells produce are released with some age, a decision that can be a financial burden. However, as Andrew explains, “The significant thing about the Clare Valley is that it is a region that produces wines with incredible intensity of flavour, but with elegance. We sell some of our wines at 10 years old and the dividend is that people get to see our wines at their best.” The Lunch As a celebration of Wunderbar lamb, Guy devised a menu with an entrée of lamb backstrap poached in extra virgin olive oil, grilled cucumber, mint and whipped yogurt, and a main of roasted rack served on baby carrots cooked in whey and honey, pearl barley and pomegranate.  Andrew and Angus brought along a range of wines to evaluate and see which suited Guy’s food best.  For the entree, Candice chose the 2009 NcNicol Watervale Riesling. It had the age to be a perfect textural match for the silky backstrap, but also fresh acidity to cut through the whipped yoghurt. For the rack, Candice’s call was Andrew’s 2001 Peppertree Vineyard Shiraz. The wine was still dense, but time had softened the mouthfeel, allowing the secondary fruit to sit beautifully with the flesh and the sauce to suit the wonderful, natural intensity of the wine.  As the afternoon progressed, conversation became more relaxed as stories were shared and reflections were made on their beautiful home. Guy Parkinson’s back strap of lamb poached in extra virgin olive oil, grilled baby cucumber, whipped sheep yogurt
Recipe:  Get  Guy Parkinson’s back strap of lamb poached in extra virgin olive oil, grilled baby cucumber, whipped sheep yogurt Wine:  Explore  Mitchell Family Wines Clare Valley:  Discover the fun of cycling the   Clare Valley Riesling Trail
Two Blues Sauvignon Blanc 2014
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