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Tuesday, September 30, 2008

chicken pot pie

chicken pot pie 2

It would be really unfair to judge this chicken pot pie by the photos. Here's what happened: I saw some great pictures of a chicken pot pie in Bon Appetit, then did some research in my New Best Recipe book. I made a sort of hybrid of both recipes, a full batch - but split it into 2 smaller baking dishes, and froze one of them. All the photos were from prepping them in the original batch, but then the first one was so delicious and I was so starving that I just forgot completely to take a final picture. So a couple weeks later, I bake the second one (great to have a backup for the photo-op, so I thought), and while it was just as delicious, something weird happened with the inside bubbling up over the crust, so it was ugly as sin. Anyway, that's why you shouldn't judge. Try this, okay? It's amazing.

Grocery list: (topping) 1.5 cups AP flour, 4 T shortening, 8 T butter, 3-4 T ice water; (filling) 1.5 pounds chicken, 1.5 c chicken broth, 1 onion, 3 carrots, 1 celery ribs, 4 T butter, 1/2 flour, 1.5 c milk, thyme, 1 cup chopped mushrooms, 1/2 cup heavy cream, 1/2 cup white wine, 3/4 frozen peas (thawed), fresh parsley.

step 1 pot pie crust shortening and flour

Start by making the crust in a food processor. Note - the butter and shortening should be really cold, cut into 1/4 inch pieces, before putting into the processor. Mix the flour and a pinch of salt in the processor, then cut the shortening in with short pulses. Then add the butter and keep pulsing until it has a cornmeal consistency, and dump everything into a bowl.

crust for pot pie ready to knead

Mash 3 T of ice water into the crust with a spatula (add another T if it doesn't stick together).

crust for chicken pot pie

For a ball and flatten into a disk; wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Roll it out on a floured surface until it's a little bigger than the size of your baking dish.

prepped ingredients for pot pie

You can make your own chicken broth by poaching the chicken in water over a slow boil (throw in salt, peppercorns, garlic cloves, some thyme, some extra chunks of celery or carrot if you have them) for about 20 minutes. Set aside 1.5 cups of the broth and shred the chicken. Prep all the vegetables by chopping into small 1/4 inch pieces.

carrot onion mushroom celery for pot pie

In a large dutch oven, saute the carrots, onions and celery (I added mushrooms too) in olive oil over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes.

sauteing vegetables for pot pie

Add a few sprigs of chopped thyme. Then, stir in the white wine, and season well with salt and pepper.

vegetables with broth for chicken pot pie

Stir in the chicken broth, and bring to a boil. It should reduce down by about half within 5 minutes.

melted butter and flour for thickening pot pie

Melt the butter in a small bowl in the microwave, then stir in 1/2 cup flour to make a paste. This will help thicken the filling.

chicken pot pie filling

Stir in the heavy cream and bring back to a simmer, then stir in the chicken pieces. Mix in the flour/butter mixture one spoonful at a time, stirring well, so the filling thickens.

chicken pot pie baked

Pour the filling into 1 or 2 baking dishes, then cut your crust to cover it. Poke a few holes through the top to allow the steam to escape. Bake for 30 minutes at 400 degrees, until the top is golden and the filling is bubbling (or in my case, till the filling bubbles all the way over and looks terrible but still tastes delicious).

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