Friday, March 26, 2010

Chicken Pot Pie

As promised, here is the chicken pot pie recipe. This makes two regular sized pies, though sometimes I make three smaller, deep dish pies, each of which provides K and me with two meals. The filling doesn't contain potatoes, as they don't freeze well, but if you're not planning to freeze them a few chunks of waxy potatoes would be good. A friend of mine, whose son doesn't care for peas, uses corn in their place. This is the perfect thing when unexpected guests show up -- or even expected ones!

Chicken Pot Pie

The filling:

  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • 1 cup celery, chopped
  • 1 cup carrot, chopped
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup half-and-half
  • 4 cups cooked chicken, chopped or shredded
  • 1 cup frozen peas, thawed
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • freshly ground pepper to taste
Cook first three ingredients in butter until tender. Add in the flour, stirring until it coats the vegetables. Cook for a minute, stirring. Add the chicken broth and the half-and-half; stir constantly until thick and bubbly. Stir in the chicken, peas, salt and pepper.

The crust:

You can buy pie crusts ready made, though it's hard to find them without trans fats. Another solution is to top the filling with puff pastry rolled out just large enough to cover the top and brushed with egg yolk mixed with a few drops of water. Or, you can make

Awesome All Butter Pie Crust

Also known as pate brisee. This makes enough crust for two deep dish pies. It's good with either savory or sweet pies. If you're going to bake it first, as for a quiche, be sure to put it in the freezer for half an hour or more, or it will slide down the sides of the pan. The addition of vodka makes for a particularly flaky crust, as it evaporates very quickly in the oven. Other kinds of alcohol work as well -- say, apple brandy for an apple pie.

  • 5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 16 ounces butter, cut into cubes and placed in the freezer for at least 20 minutes
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 10 Tablespoons ice water
  • 2-3 Tablespoons ice cold vodka
Cut the sticks of butter into cubes and freeze for at least twenty minutes. Combine flour, salt and sugar, then either cut in the butter by hand, or pulse in a food processor until mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. If you use a food processor it will either need to be large, or you'll have to halve the recipe and make the pie crust in two batches. Add half the ice water a tablespoon at a time, fluffing with a fork, or pulsing in processor. Add vodka the same way, then the rest of the ice water. If the dough holds together when you pinch it, it's ready. If not, add a little more water.

Divide dough into four disks and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate at least an hour to allow the flour to hydrate, or up to two days. When ready to make the pie, remove crust and allow to sit at room temperature for five to fifteen minutes so it will be a little easier to work with. Roll out on a floured board or pastry cloth, fold into fourths, and line the bottom of the pie pan. Add filling, roll out the top, cover the filling, and flute the edges. Repeat for second pie. I always have a little extra crust left over, which I save in the freezer until I have enough to use for something else.

Score the top of the pie to release steam (or use a pie bird), and brush with an egg yolk mixed with a few drops of water.

At this point you can freeze one or both of the pies. Be sure to wrap them tightly. Bake straight from the freezer, uncovered, at 400 degrees for an hour or until the crust is brown. I usually bake one and freeze the other(s).


  1. This sounds great and would be a wonderful dish to serve on the chilly afternoons we're still having.

  2. This is a favorite recipe at our house! I add corn, which was put up at the end of last summer. There's always a fight over who's going to get the last peice, but our 11 yr. old always wins ~ you just can't tell a kid, "No, you can't have any more healthy food!" Thanks for posting the recipe, it will make it easier to share with friends. And I can't wait to try that crust recipe ~ sounds delish!