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If you're looking for something to mix up your Christmas main course, this salmon kedgeree pie is sure to hit the spot – golden and flaky on the outside, tender and fragrant on the inside. You can make part of this recipe ahead of time and pop it in the freezer for a stress-free, simple Christmas Day. See method
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Heat the oil in a medium, lidded saucepan over a low heat and add the onion, garlic and ginger. Cover and cook for 8 mins until softened, then add the spices and cook for a further 2 mins. Stir in the rice with 200ml water, increase the heat to medium and bring to a simmer. Cover, reduce the heat to low and cook for 12 mins. Remove from the heat, keeping the lid on, and set aside for 10 mins. Fluff the rice with a fork, season, transfer to a bowl and leave to cool for 30 mins. Stir in the herbs and discard the cardamom.
Meanwhile, bring a pan of water to the boil and boil 3 eggs for 8 mins. Drain, run under cold water, then peel and thickly slice each egg lengthways into 3-4 slices.
Trim the salmon fillet to a rectangle (roughly 10 x 25cm) and discard the skin. Chop the trimmings and stir through the rice mixture. Unroll the pastry, place on a work surface and roll it out to about 32 x 40cm. With a long side of the pastry facing you, spoon the rice onto one half in a rectangle about the same size as the salmon, leaving a 3cm border. Top with half the smoked salmon, then the salmon fillet. Spoon over the remaining rice and top with sliced eggs and remaining smoked salmon.
Brush the edges of the pastry with the beaten egg. Fold the empty side of pastry over the filling and tuck over and around the salmon stack, pressing to seal the edges. Trim to neaten, then crimp to seal. Brush with egg then use any pastry offcuts to add decorations, if you like. Brush any decorations with egg then transfer the pie to a lined baking tray. Chill for 15 mins.
Preheat the oven to gas 6, 200°C, fan 180°C and place a baking sheet inside. Put the salmon tray on top of the preheated sheet and bake for 30 mins or until crisp and golden. Leave to rest for 10-15 mins; serve with watercress and lemon wedges, if you like.
Get ahead: The rice mixture can be made up to 24hrs ahead; store in an airtight container in the fridge.
Freezing and defrosting guidelines
Freeze the assembled pie from the end of step 4 but through brushing the egg. Defrost for 24 hrs in the fridge then brush with egg and cook for 40 minutes. In order to enjoy optimum flavour and quality, frozen items are best used within 3 months of their freezing date. For more tips on freezing and defrosting food, read our article Love Your Freezer.
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