Chicken Pot Pies

Brrr! It’s chilly tonight! Perfect night for something warm and tasty. Like this

I roasted a couple chickens this morning, hoping to stretch them to last a couple meals…I think they’ll make it actually, even though we cut into one for lunch – by accident, of course.

I haven’t made chicken pot pies for ages! After all, it’s so much easier to dump the filling in a giant casserole dish and top it with biscuits. I don’t know what possessed me this afternoon. But not more than half way into it, I had a light bulb moment – “Wow! This is why I don’t make these!”. Anna came to my rescue in the nick of time and made the second batch of pie crust. And guess what? Her crusts were better than mine. And that was a tinsy bit annoying. ;P  For the life of me, I can’t figure it out!

Anyways, here’s the recipe for the crust. Or you can use your tried and true favorite – which just might be safer.

2 c. white flour
1 c. whole wheat flour
1 c. cold butter
1/2 t. salt
ice water

Now I’m suffering from an inferiority complex, so I feel like I should have Anna explain how to make the crust, but I guess I’ll give it a shot…

Mix flour and salt on a bread board and cut in butter. I always use my fingers for this part, though I started off with butter that was frozen solid, so a knife helped a lot. Once the butter is incorporated throughout the flour – and there’s not a bit of it bigger than the size of a pea – add ice cold water just until moist enough to hold it all together. They say not to work pie dough anymore than you have too, but I did that and Anna didn’t, so I don’t know what to tell ya. Just play around with it a bit and see what happens.

Now, you can make individual pies in cool little ramekins (aka custard cups) like these…

…or you can make a pie sized one. Pot pies can be cooked in anything really. In fact, way back when (pot pies have been around since the Middle Ages!), pots were lined with crust – not to be eaten,  mind you, but  to keep the iron pot taste from infiltrating the food! Hmmmm…we’ve come a long way – now we get our crust and eat it too.
So yeah, this recipe will make about 6 ramekins or one pie crust. For ramekins, divide the dough into 12 portions and roll out into circles. You’ll want the edges of the bottom crust to have 1/2 an inch of excess dough hanging off, as you’ll see in the picture below. 

While all that crust stuff is happening, you should have a nice pot of chicken broth simmering on the stove. I absolutely LOVE this idea for making bone broths – Place all the bones and anything else you want to use to flavor the broth in a pasta colander inside a large pot and fill with water. To strain the broth you simply remove the colander. Sweet, simple, super nifty – no fuss, no mess, no pouring hot pots of liquid through strainers into other pots, or trying to balance pot lids to act as strainers as you pour. Yikes, the things we did before we knew!

Now the best part of pot pies – the filling.

2 t. butter
2 carrots, diced
2 celery stalks, diced
1/2 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 bunch asparagus, cut into one inch pieces
3 c. chicken, cooked and cut up
1/2 c. flour
2 c. chicken broth
salt and pepper to taste
pinch of thyme
pinch of basil
The awesome threesome.

Melt butter in a large pot. Saute onions, carrots, celery and garlic just until tender. Add chicken and asparagus. Sprinkle flour over the top and stir as you add chicken broth. The consistence should be like thick gravy.  Salt and season to taste.

Spoon filling into awaiting bottom crust and top with, guess what? The top crusts. (Sometimes recipes seem so redundant, have you noticed? Or is it just me?)

Pinch top and bottom crusts together, fold over the top and tuck gently into the inside of the crust. Slit the top with a knife so steam can escape.

Bake @ 425 for 35 minutes or until crust is golden brown.

Allow to cool at least 15 minutes before serving. Yes, I know how hard that is, but you’ll be amazed at how hot these babies stay! Learn from the wise ones…

“The only thing I don’t like about these is that I burn my tongue every time I eat them” 
~ Anonymous

3 thoughts on “Chicken Pot Pies

  1. These were soooo yummy! And the only time I was warm yesterday was while I was eating them I think.And Sarah….you shouldn't get a complex about the crust…just think how I feel with just about everything else you make??? ;)You are amazing!

  2. I'm quoting my favorite lines from this post…The light bulb moment… "Wow, this is why I don't make these."And The Awesome Threesome caption!I love your posts and love your pot pies and love you, too! :)

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