Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Chicken and Red Pepper Crustless Pie

When I saw this recipe for savoury muffins on Jugalbandi I knew I just had to try it out! The roasted peppers sounded like they would taste amazingly delicious along with the goat’s cheese. We had invited some new friends home for dinner – the first we were having after moving here – so I decided to make this as an appetizer.

The only thing was that, on the menu I had in mind, there was already a vegetarian appetizer and I needed one with chicken in it. So I decided to adapt the recipe and incorporate chicken into it. I also didn’t end up getting either feta or goat’s cheese in this village….err city… I had to settle for cream cheese. I don’t want to hear anything more said about Chennai being a small town – even the next door Nilgiri’s there used to stock imported cheese! I take back all my petty rants Nilgiri!

Then I decided that since there were other things I had to bake in the oven or grill, I didn’t want to spend time fiddling with individual muffins so I baked this as a sort of pie/quiche, without a crust – don’t know whether there is an actual name for this (Pudding? Tortilla?), so will call it a Crustless pie for now!.

I cut down on the cheese because of the additional chicken added to this recipe and increased the other proportions to serve about 10 people.

I roasted one red pepper in my oven, but found it annoying to keep opening the oven to turn them, so ended up roasting the others on the gas flame with a pair of tongs till black on all sides, wrapping them in foil tightly for 10 minutes and then peeling them. That worked fine for me.

So, this is my version of Jai & Bee’s wonderful creation, many thanks to them for inspiring me to bake this. The roasted red peppers were indeed a fabulous idea and gave it a lovely flavor, the pie itself was moist and fluffy; I served it with a hung curd dip.

Chicken and Roasted Red Pepper Pie

Wheat flour (atta) - 3 1/2 cups
Egg whites - 6
Milk - 1 ¼ to 1 ½ cups
Boneless chicken cut into strips – 250gm
Baking powder – 2 ¼ tsp
Baking soda – 1 ¼ tsp
Mixed dried herbs – 2 tsp
Salt – ¾ tsp
Garlic cloves minced – 3
Roasted red peppers peeled and chopped – 2 cups (about 3 large peppers)
Cream cheese – 150gms
Olive oil – 4 ½ tbsp
Ajwain – ½ tsp
Chilli powder – 1 tsp
Crushed black pepper – 1-2 tbsp
Spring onions, fully chopped – 1 ½ cups separated into green and white part

1. Preheat oven to 180 C. Grease a large shallow pie plate or an oven proof glass platter with a depth of about 3-5 inches.
2. Heat 3 tbsp of oil in a non stick pan, add the ajwain and when it changes colour, add the garlic and the spring onions (only whites) and sauté for 5 minutes.
3. Add boneless chicken pieces and cook on high till it turns white (approx 5 minutes) and then cook on low for 2 minutes more, adding a splash of water if needed.
3. Remove the mixture from the pan and cool.
4. Beat eggs well; add the remaining 1½ tbsp oil, 1 cup milk and green part of the spring onions.
5. Add wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda, dried herbs, salt, crushed black pepper and chilli powder. Mix gently till smooth and add a little more milk if needed.
6. Add the chopped roasted red peppers and cream cheese.
7. Pour into the greased pie plate or a glass platter and bake at 180 C for 40-45 minutes. Test to see if a skewer comes out clean, cool.
8. Cut into wedges and serve warm or cold.


Sig said...

That looks delicious! What a gret recipe... I'm sure the dinner party was a big hit!

Miri said...

Thanks Sig! The dinner party was good fun - actually I love any activity which involves being with people we like to be around and if food is a part of it, makes it all the more nice doesn't it! :)

Cynthia said...

Nice combo.

bee said...

looks fabulous. why don't i see your blog on food blog desam?

Miri said...

Thanks Bee....I'm not sure about food blog desam, I sent an email as well as left a request in the comments section of Mahanandi. I thought they might be including new members once a month or something, so thought I'd wait till Nov end before checking...

Passionate baker...& beyond said...

Sounds great Miri. Does it have egg yolks too? Which cream cheese do you use? Too many questions...sorry! Have to try this soon, but we don't get cream cheese her.Thanks :0)

Miri said...

Didn't use the egg yolks in this recipe (and hence no eggy smell I think inspite of the 6 eggs...)
But you could use whole eggs i think and cut down the quantity accordingly.

I searched and searched and finally found Kraft cream cheese in a small grocery store in Alaknanda - I later found that Morning Store in GK 1 M block market also stocks it.

Not sure why the Britannia brand of cream cheese "Malai Chaska" isnt available here - used to get in Chennai quite easily...

I think if you look, you might find some place in Gurgaon which stocks imported cream cheese.....or you can use feta cheese - I'm sure there must be some store there carrying it?