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How to make Coronation chicken pie

Take this British favourite to the next level and turn it into the ultimate picnic centrepiece. A real crowd-pleaser, chicken breasts marinated in a spicy yogurt keeps the filling juicy and tender. If you've the time, marinate overnight for better results.

  1. Marinate the chicken

    Preheat the oven to gas 6, 200°C, fan 180°C. Line a large baking tray with nonstick baking paper. Grease a 2lb (900g) loaf tin (about 8cm deep) with oil, and line the base and short sides with a strip of baking paper, leaving 10cm overhang on each side.

    Put the cumin, ground coriander, 2 tsp garam masala and 1½ tsp turmeric in a large bowl; season and add 125g yogurt. Mix to combine well, then add the chicken; mix to coat. Coat the chicken in the spicy yogurt mix. To boost the flavours, you can do this up to 24 hrs in advance and keep covered in the fridge. Lay the chicken on the tray and bake for 25 mins until cooked through..

    Marinate the chicken
  2. Shred into strips

    Leave the oven on for step 6. Once roasted and cool enough to handle, shred the chicken into 1cm-wide pieces using 2 forks and toss in any leftover juices. It will be easier to shred if still slightly warm.

    Put the remaining yogurt and ground spices in a mixing bowl; season and stir. Add the chicken and fresh coriander and toss to coat; set aside. Put the spinach in a colander; pour over boiling water to wilt. Cool a little, then squeeze as much water out as possible. In a bowl, combine with the garlic and half the chilli. In a separate bowl, toss the mango with the remaining chilli and the lime zest and juice.

    Shred into strips
  3. Cut the pastry

    Dust the work surface with flour, then roll out the large pack of pastry to 30 x 40cm. Place the loaf tin in the centre, with the long sides parallel to the long sides of the pastry. Cut 4 diagonal lines out from each corner of the tin to the corners of the pastry, then cut a 3cm wedge out from each corner of the tin.

    Cutting a wedge from the pastry helps when lining the tin, as it gets rid of the excess. Cut a 3cm wedge out from each corner, with the points touching the corners of the tin.

    Cut the pastry
  4. Line the tin with the pastry

    Remove the tin, fold the short ends into the centre, followed by the long ends, then lift into the lined tin.

    Carefully lift the folded pastry into the bottom of the tin so that you can unfold it without breaking or stretching it.

    Line the tin with the pastry
  5. Pinch the seams

    Unfold the long ends up the sides, then the short ends; pinch the seams together so no filling can escape as the pie bakes. You should have a 5cm overhang on all sides. Spoon one-third of the chicken mix into the tin and press down. Lay over half the mango, then half the spinach. Repeat, pressing each layer down. Finish with the remaining chicken.

    Pinch the seams
  6. Crimp the edge

    Roll out the small pack of pastry and cut to fit the top of the pie. Whisk the egg yolk with ½ tbsp water and brush the edges of the pastry with it. Lay the pastry over the pie and press down to seal. Crimp the edges a finger-width apart. Reroll excess pastry to make decorations, if you like, sticking them on with eggwash. Brush the whole lid with eggwash and scatter with the nigella seeds. Cut a few steam holes, then place on a baking tray and bake for 1 hr. Cool in the tin on a wire rack, then cover and chill overnight. Use the paper to lift out the pie to serve.

    Crimp the edge
  7. Ingredients

    We've included a handy ingredients list to help you make this delicious coronation chicken pie – don't forget to screenshot the list before going shopping!

    vegetable oil, for greasing
    2 tsp ground cumin
    2½ tsp ground coriander
    3 tsp garam masala
    2 tsp ground turmeric
    250g Greek-style yogurt
    2 x 600g packs skinless boneless chicken thighs
    30g fresh coriander, finely chopped
    500g spinach
    1 small garlic clove, crushed
    1 small red chilli, finely chopped
    1½ x 425g tins sliced mango, drained
    ½ lime, finely zested and juiced
    plain flour, for dusting
    550g pack ready-rolled shortcrust pastry
    375g pack ready-rolled shortcrust pastry
    1 egg yolk
    2 tsp nigella seeds

    Serves 12 | Takes 2½ hrs plus overnight chilling

    For top tips on protecting you and your family when preparing raw meat and poultry, visit Food Safety in the Home.


    Each serving contains

    • Energy

    • Fat

      33g 46%
    • Saturates

      12g 58%
    • Sugars

      5g 5%
    • Salt

      0.9g 15%

    of the reference intake
    Carbohydrate 32.9g Protein 24.8g Fibre 2.1g