Saturday, November 19, 2011

Chicken pot pie!!!

So as you all (in the US at least :) ) know, next week is .... (drum roll!) Thanksgiving!!! I think that all foodies get super excited about that one, I know I do! The problem being that this year it's just Matt and me, not labmate to feed, dogs are not allowed to eat human food (except for what gravity occasionally gives them...). But do not think for a second that this will prevent me from making a turkey (NO WAY!), I will skip on the dressing this year, even though I had a great recipe lined up to try, rustic herb skillet stuffing from What's Gaby cooking. 

Ok I need to stop rambling, this is not the place to discuss Thanksgiving, I really need to pace my self so we will get back to that later. The point of all this is that today I went grocery shopping for next week end as a result I have a semi-giant turkey in the freezer and my fridge is about to explode. And I know that I will have a ton of left overs so until then I need to free some containers which means left over and semi-healthy eating. The first step in that was finishing the pot pie I had sitting in the freezer for a while now, probably a couple months. This is very convenient when you need a yummy, heart warming, comforting dinner and guess what, it should be awesome with some turkey!!!

So here is the recipe I used is based on Ina Garten's recipe, I did use the pie crust she is offering it is great and flaky, you could use any pie crust you usually have at hand or even store bought puff pastry. As you can see on the picture of the right, the pie crust was very much tempting, even to non human consumption :)

This recipe is a perfect comfort food for the cold weather coming our way and always gets excited responses when it comes around. It also freezes beautifully, this will most likely serve 6 (we had 3 dinners for 2 out of it) even though it says it's for 4... I made them two at a time and froze the rest of the filling and dough, I just took them out in the morning the day I wanted to use them. The filling might be a little more watery after freezing but it is still absolutely awesome!!!

- 3 AP flour
- 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 c vegetable shortening
- 1 stick cold unsalted butter, diced
- 1/2 to 2/3 c ice water
- 1 egg beaten with 1 tbsp water, for egg wash
- 3 whole (6 split) chicken breasts, bone-in, skin-on (or 4-6 c of cubed chicken or turkey)
- olive oil
- salt & pepper
- 5 c chicken stock
- 2 chicken bouillon cubes
- 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
- 2 yellow onions, chopped
- 3/4 c AP flour
- 1/4 c cream (I use light cream)
- 2 c medium-diced carrots, blanched for 2 minutes
- 10 oz package frozen peas
- 1/2 c parsley minced
- Preheat the oven to 350F
- Place the chicken on a baking sheet and rub with olive oil. Season generously. Roast for 35 to 40 min, or until fully cooked. Set aside to cool, then skin and debone the breasts. Cut the meat into large dice.
- While your chicken cooks prepare your pie dough, pulse the flour, salt, and baking powder in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Add the cold shortening and butter and pulse until you have wet sand with some pie size pieces of butter. Sprinkle 1/2c of ice water uniformly and pulse until it just come together (DO NOT OVER WORK!). Squeeze a handful of dough, if it does not hold together add in more water 1/2 tbsp at a time. Dump the dough out onto a floured board and knead quickly into a ball. Wrap the dough in plastic and allow it to rest in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
- In the mean time prepare your filling, in a small saucepan, heat the chicken stock and dissolve the bouillon cubes in the stock. Heat a large pot over medium-low heat, melt the butter and saute the onions until translucent. Add the flour and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes. Carefully and slowly add the hot chicken stock to the sauce, you want to avoid lumps. Simmer over low heat for 1 more minute, stirring, until thick. Add 2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper, and cream. Add the cubed chicken, carrots, peas and parsley. Mix well.
- Preheat the oven to 375F
- Place the filling into ovenproof bowls. Divide the dough and roll each piece into a circle big enough to cover the bowls with at least 1/2 inch over hang. Brush the outside edges of each bowl with the egg wash, then place the dough on top.  Crimp the dough to fold over the side, pressing it to make it stick, you can trim it if you wish, I personally don't. Brush the dough with egg wash and make 3 slits in the top.  Place on a baking sheet and bake for 1 hour, or until the top is golden brown and the filling is bubbling hot.

Then dive in carefully, need I say it's REALLY hot but so hard to wait, I think that I burn my mouth every time...
1-  Instead of using chicken breasts you can use any left over meat you have. I am actually considering making a seafood version later this winter, stay tuned!

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