Chicken Pot Pie

Chicken Pot Pie

“And if the taxes went up as predicted they would have to sell the house even if they kept the coffeehouse, which they probably wouldn’t do either because they wouldn’t be able to bear putting up the prices enough for the sort of hash and chili and chicken pot pie and succotash pudding and big fat sandwiches on slabs of our own bread menu that we do so well.”
-Sunshine

Recipe re-testing can be tedious. There’s a drag-yourself-out-of-bed-before-dawn-when-the-heater-is-broken kind of reluctance to the whole damnable process. If only I could make everything masterfully the first time! But once in a while if the culinary bodies are aligned, you stumble upon a lucky escape hatch.

For instance, when you make too much pie crust you can just…make more pie. And if seven pounds later your patience for peeling, slicing and arranging apples has waned considerably, you can swap the peeler for a cleaver and hack apart a chicken instead. Plus rain and Chicken Pot Pie go better together than rain and appl–hmm… Better than rain and cinnamon rol–no, those two are pretty great too.

Rain and Chicken Pot Pie is better than rain without Chicken Pot Pie.

Chicken Pot Pie

Ingredients

Chicken Pot PIe Ingredients

  • 2 boneless chicken breasts
  • 1/6 cup butter or 2 tablespoons of oil
  • 1 cup sliced carrots
  • 1 cup frozen green peas
  • 1 cup sliced celery
  • 1/6 cup butter
  • 1 onion
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • homemade pie crust or 1 package with 2 unbaked 9″ crusts
Directions

This is the first savory food I’m knocking out and once you’ve got the pie crust, the rest is just cooking. I love baking, I do–I really do, honest–but the beautiful thing about cooking is how fast and loose you can be with pretty much everything. This goes for the filling itself, but even for components, like the chicken stock.

Chicken Stock Ingredients
  • Bones of 1 chicken
  • 1 large onion
  • 3 stalks of celery
  • 1 large carrot
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 10 peppercorns
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 teaspoons salt
Chicken Stock Directions

Prep of the ingredients should be minimal. Scrub the celery clean and cut into halves (or thirds depending on the size of your stock pot). Don’t mince, don’t slice, just hack and dump. Same goes for the carrots. Scrub. Peel. Chop. Dump.

Cut the ends off the onions and quarter it so you have four very large chunks. Into the pot! Toss in the garlic, peppercorns, a few generous pinches of salt, and the bay leaf. Fill the pot with cold water until it covers the ingredients by 2-3 inches.

If you have a steamer basket, open it inside the pot so it gently tamps all the ingredients down. Bring to a boil. After a few minutes reduce to a simmer.

After 15 minutes skim the top of the water, and check back every 15-30 minutes for the first hour. Keep it on a simmer for 6-8 hours, adding more water when the level dips below all your ingredients.

When the hours are up and your whole house smells delicious, take it off, strain the soup into another large vessel and chill overnight. Skim off the solidified fat in the morning and freeze what you don’t use for the chicken pot pie for soups or other edibles.

Chicken Pot Pie Directions

The alternative to an all day on-off relationship with your kitchen is to buy the chicken broth or opt for one of the overnight slow cooker methods that are floating around. Either will work just fine.

But enough about the ingredients: onto the pie!

Continue reading Chicken Pot Pie