When I think of holidays and celebrations, Chicken Pastel or the Filipino version of chicken pot pie comes to mind. The mingling of Chinese and Spanish ingredients makes Chicken Pastel a unique and traditional comfort food.

There are many variations and interpretations of chicken pastel from Spain to the Americas. This is my version of Chicken Pastel from the Philippines which fills me with nostalgia and fond memories of Mom's homecooked meals.

Chicken Pastel
Serves: 6-8 people Prep Time: 1 hr. including marinating and slicing Total Time: 3 hrs. including pie crust  Print

2 lbs. boneless chicken
1 lemon
3 tbsps. soy sauce
Mexican pork chorizo
1 can Vienna sausage
Stuffed small Manzanilla olives
3 cups water
3 large carrots sliced
9 small potatoes or 3 medium quartered
11 white mushrooms sliced
2 cups chicken broth
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup butter at room temperature ( 1 stick)
1/4 cup cold water
1/8 cup vegetable shortening
1 beaten egg + 2 tbsps. water for egg wash

Step 1

Slice 2 pounds of boneless chicken breast into 2- inch pieces and put into a bowl. Add 3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce and the juice of one lemon.

Marinate for at least 30 minutes.
TIP: Make sure to remove any lemon seeds from the chicken as these can get wedged between your teeth.
Step 2

Add 3 cups of water into a dutch oven and the drained marinated chicken. Boil uncovered until all of the water has evaporated, about 15 minutes.

Using the same pan. add 2 tablespoons butter into the pan and brown chicken for 2 minutes.
Prepare pork chorizo, Vienna sausages and stuffed Manzanilla olives

Slice Vienna sausages and set aside 20 Manzanilla olives for later.

The Mexican pork chorizo is what I used for this recipe instead of Spanish sausage (Chorizo de Bilbao).
Step 3
Pork chorizo - secret ingredient of the chicken pastel

Remove pork chorizo from its casing and pan fry until cooked for about 10 minutes. Add about 1/2 cup of cooked chorizo to the chicken. Reserve the rest for breakfast as this is great with scrambled eggs.
Chorizo and eggs recipe

Spanish sausage or chorizo de Bilbao can be used if available. It is cured and sliced like a regular sausage unlike the Mexican sausage.. I opted for the Chorizo de Puerco Mexican ground sausage as this was lean and fresh and was the only chorizo I could find at the local supermarket. The blend of robust spices and lean pork made this chicken pastel so flavorful and special.
Step 4

Slice 3 large carrots, contents of one carton of white mushrooms ( about 11) and 3 medium potatoes or 9 small ones like the ones shown. Set mushrooms aside.

Add the potatoes and carrots only to the chicken mixture as these take longer to cook than the mushrooms. Add 2 cups chicken broth and simmer covered until potatoes and carrots are tender about 15 minutes.