Sorry for being a TWD slacker. I have had so much going on over the past week. I’ve been sick and we had to go out of town unexpectedly over the weekend for my husband’s grandfather’s funeral, so the rice pudding just didn’t get done. I’m sorry, and I’ll be back next week for the Twofer Pie (which I’ve already made, and it’s delicious!). So, instead, I will bring you a great dinner that I made recently.
Chicken Potpie is one of those dinners that I never liked as a kid, but discovered in college that I really do like. I finally convinced David that we should have it for dinner one night, and I was so excited to make this recipe that I had saved for a while. This was such a great recipe. A great aspect of it is that you can adapt it based on the ingredients you have or based on your preferences. I omitted the red peppers and mushrooms, but used green beans, peas, and carrots for the filling. I just loved the filling. It had such a wonderful, made-from-scratch taste. Next time I will definitely include the mushrooms. The crust was fabulous. It was really flaky and the cream cheese and butter combination gave it a great flavor. The recipe says you can make either individual potpies or make it in a larger dish. I made half of the recipe and baked in in a 9×9-inch dish. I already can’t wait to have this again!
Chicken pot pie, adapted from The Pastry Queen
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 medium-size yellow onion, chopped
1 large russet potato, peeled and diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 red bell pepper, diced
8 ounces button mushrooms, sliced
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 purchased cooked rotisserie chicken or 1 whole stewed chicken, cooled (I use 4-6 chicken breasts, poached and shredded)
8 ounces fresh green beans, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 (8-ounce) package frozen peas
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1 cup all purpose flour
2 1/2 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup heavy cream
Dash of Tobasco (I use 1/2-1 tsp or so)
Salt and freshly ground white pepper (I use black pepper)
1 cup (2 sticks) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 16 pieces
3 cups all purpose flour
10 ounces chilled cream cheese, cut into large pieces
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper (I use black pepper)
1 large egg
To make the filling:
If cooking chicken breasts, pound the chicken breasts to 1/4-1/2 inch thickness and place in a pot of simmering water before chopping veggies so they’ll be ready to shred while the veggies are sauteing.
Melt the butter in a large sauté pan set over medium heat. Add the onions, carrots and celery and sauté for 5 minutes. Add the garlic, bell pepper, and mushrooms and sauté about 15 minutes, until the vegetables are tender. Stir in the crushed red pepper, thyme and add salt and pepper to taste.
While the vegetables are sauteing, skin the chicken, pull the meat off the bones and shred the meat or cut into bite-size pieces. Stir the peas and chicken into the vegetable mixture. Set the filling aside.
To make the cream sauce:
Melt the butter over medium heat in a large saucepan. Add the flour and whisk until smooth. Whisk in the chicken stock and cook the sauce over medium heat until it thickens to the consistency of a cream soup. Add the cream, hot pepper sauce, and salt and white pepper to taste. Pour the cream sauce over the chicken filling and stir to combine. Fill individual 1/4-cup capacity oven-safe bowls three-quarters of the way to the top with the creamed chicken filling.
To make the crust:
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (or don’t, if you’re cooking for the freezer). In the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade, pulse the butter and flour until crumbly. Add the cream cheese, salt, and white pepper. Continue pulsing just until the dough forms a ball.
Set the dough on a flat surface dusted with flour. Use a floured rolling pin to roll the dough out to 1/4-inch thickness. Measure the diameter of the pot pie bowls-mine are about 4 inches across-and cut out dough rounds that are 1 1/2 inches larger in diameter. Lay the dough rounds on top of the pot pies, making sure the dough hangs evenly over each bowl. Whisk the egg in a small bowl and brush the dough lightly with the beaten egg. Bake the pies for 20 to 25 minutes, until golden brown. Serve immediately.
You can also bake this in two 9-inch dishes or a single 9×13 inch dish, rolling out the dough to just slightly larger than the dish and topping it with the pastry, and tucking in the sides of the pastry.
To cook from the freezer, preheat oven to 375. Cover top of the dish with foil and bake for 35 minutes. Remove the foil. Whisk the egg in a small bowl and brush the dough lightly with the beaten egg. Bake for an additional 15-20 minutes, until golden brown and a knife inserted into the center registers a hot filling.