Food/Entertainment

Chicken Pot Pie

Another Westover Leftover!  Remember the chicken soup I made a few days ago?  I cooked extra chicken in it to make the broth extra rich, and also to have leftover chicken and broth to make quick and easy meals.  You just can’t be that!  I began with 5 ½ lbs of bone-in chicken breast and 8 cans of chicken broth.  The magic continued from there.

     I ended up with one big bowl of soup which I photographed in one of my best bowls so it would look beautiful.  I was going to pour it back in the pot after taking pics, but I looked at it for so long, I ate it!  It was so good.  I have six small bags of soup in the freezer for future sickies.  I made three individual chicken pot pies.  I only intended to make two, but there was enough filling and pie crust to make one small one.  Can ya say, “Lunch?” I also made ten chicken, shrimp and black bean burritos.  Last night I made enough chicken and biscuits to serve four.  I made all this food with one big pot of chicken soup. What a deal, huh?

     Look at these beauties!!  Except for making homemade pie crust, the rest was a cinch.  If you just can’t make your own crust, use store-bought.  (Just don’t tell me.)

     I’ve seen lots of recipes for chicken pot pie baked and served in a pie pan.  I don’t care for that, because even if you let it sit for ten minutes after baking, I think everything slides out into the middle of the dish once you’ve cut it.  Hence the individual pies that I make.  Trust me, they are easier, because working with a small piece of dough is easier than a big piece.

     One thing I’ve learned over the years is to add more gravy than you think you might want.  You don’t want to end up with just chicken and veggies.  Between the holes you must put in the top crust so the steam can escape and what bubbles up around the edges of the crust you lose precious gravy.  Steam is part of your gravy!  No!  Not my gravy. Say it ain’t so. Make it on the wet side. I don’t know about you, but the gravy is a big part of the deliciousness of a chicken pot pie. I should have added a little extra to this batch.

PIE CRUST INGREDIENTS:  (This is for a double crust pie)

2 cups unbleached AP flour

1 tsp salt

2/3 cup Crisco

7 TBSP iced water

PREPARATION:

     In a large mixing bowl, whisk flour and salt together.  Cut in Crisco with a pastry blender until mixture is pea sized.  Add your iced water one teaspoon at a time, stirring with a fork each time. Test it by picking up a small hunk and pinching it into a small ball.  If it sticks together smoothly, you’re good.  If it feels dry and crumbly, add another ½ teaspoon of water.  The texture is important.  It won’t roll out correctly if it’s too dry.

     Form dough into a ball and then cut it in half.  Depending on the size dish you’re using, you may want to cut it in half again so you have four pieces.

     On a lightly floured surface, roll dough with a floured rolling pin until it’s the shape you want.  Pick rolled dough up with a spatula or wrap it around the rolling pin to transfer it to the dish.

FILLING INGREDIENTS:

Pastry for double pie crust

1 can chicken broth

3 TBSP flour

2 TBSP corn starch

2 or 3 cups of chicken stock from your soup pot

1 chicken bouillon cube

2 carrots, peeled and diced

1 rib celery, diced

½ tsp poultry seasoning

½ tsp thyme

1 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp parsley

Pepper to taste

½ cup milk

½ – ¾ cup frozen peas, rinsed in water to remove ice

1 large chicken breast (about 2 cups), cooked and cut into big chunks

PREPARATION:

In a 3 quart saucepan, add chicken broth, flour, corn starch, and bouillon.  Over medium heat, bring to a simmer while whisking lumps out. Add 3 or 4 cups of chicken stock from your soup pot. (or a jar of chicken gravy). Once it’s come back to a simmer, add the carrots and celery.  Turn heat down to low. Cover pot with cover askew and let it simmer, stirring with whisk once in a while.

When vegetables are tender add the seasonings and peas.  When peas are done, add the chicken and milk. Ladle into prepared crusts.  Top with crust and poke holes in it with a fork.

Bake at 425°F for 30 – 40 minutes or until crust is golden brown.

To reheat any leftovers, it does fine in the microwave.  You’ll probably need to add extra gravy because the pastry soaks it up.

By Chew Wanna Eat?

Gail Westover, a Treasure Lake resident has been cooking most of her life.  Hobbies come and go, as we all know, but for nearly 50 years, she has made homemade cooking a priority when it comes to feeding her family.  There is nothing she won’t cook, from Braided Danish and Marble Rye Bagels to International foods of all sorts.  “When you’ve cooked as many years as I have, nothing will scare you,” Gail says.  She admits that she has an extremely hard time following someone else’s recipe and has become a talented recipe developer.  We are happy to welcome Chew Wanna Eat? to The Lake News where you will have access to her creations.

Categories: Food/Entertainment

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