Chicken Pot Pie is a fall staple at my house and is a true comfort food. There are so many approaches to making pot pie, that we all seem have our own version, or favorite. Whether it is quick and easy in a store bought pie shell with a double crusted top, or with biscuits, I find all pot pies soul nourishing and savory.
This recipe, which I adapted from Ina Garten’s, is a bit time consuming and laborious, but you will find the results to be worth the wait. It is perfect for a dinner party or busy day, as it can be made ahead and popped in the oven before serving. This Chicken Pot Pie is like no other, and you will be pleased with it’s stunning presentation, as well as the rave reviews from friends and family.
- 3 whole (6 split) chicken breasts, bone-in, skin-on
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 5 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade
- 2 chicken bouillon packets ( I prefer the Herb-Ox low sodium, or you can use powder or cubes)
- 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
- 2 cups yellow onions, chopped (2 onions)
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 2 cups medium-diced carrots, blanched for 2 minutes
- 1 (10-ounce) package frozen peas (2 cups)
- 1 1/2 cups frozen small whole onions ( these can be purchase in the frozen section of your grocery)
- 1 tsp chopped thyme leaves
- 1/2 cup minced fresh parsley leaves
- Note: Options worth adding are, a splash of good sherry to taste and 2 small yukon gold potatoes diced.
For the pastry:
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
- 1/4 pound cold unsalted butter, diced
- 1/2 to 2/3 cup ice water
- 1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash
- Flaked sea salt and cracked black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 350° F
- Place the chicken breasts on a baking sheet and rub them with olive oil. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Roast for 35 to 40 minutes, or until cooked through. Set aside until cool enough to handle, then remove the meat from the bones and discard the skin. Cut the chicken into large dice. You will have 4 to 6 cups of cubed chicken.
- In a small saucepan, heat the chicken stock and dissolve the bouillon cubes in the stock. In a large pot or Dutch oven, melt the butter and saute the onions over medium-low heat for 10 to 15 minutes, until translucent. Add the flour and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes. Add the hot chicken stock to the sauce. Simmer over low heat for 1 more minute, stirring, until thick. Add 2 teaspoons salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and heavy cream. Add the cubed chicken, carrots, peas, onions and parsley. Mix well.
- For the pastry, mix the flour, salt, and baking powder in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Add the shortening and butter and mix quickly with your fingers until each piece is coated with flour. Pulse 10 times, or until the fat is the size of peas. With the motor running, add the ice water; process only enough to moisten the dough and have it just come together. 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.
- Preheat the oven to 375° F.
- Divide the filling equally among 4 ovenproof bowls. Divide the dough into quarters and roll each piece into an 8-inch circle. Brush the outside edges of each bowl with the egg wash, then place the dough on top. Trim the circle to 1/2-inch larger than the top of the bowl. Crimp the dough to fold over the side, pressing it to make it stick. Brush the dough with egg wash and make 3 slits in the top. Sprinkle with sea salt and cracked pepper. Place on a baking sheet and bake for 1 hour, or until the top is golden brown and the filling is bubbling hot.
Photo: Smitten Kitchen