Cooking 101 - Chicken Pot Pie

We had the most SCRUMPTIOUS dinner yesterday and I have to share this recipe with all of you. I got it from (I know, I know, roll your eyes) Martha Stewart's Comfort Foods cookbook - a must-have for every kitchen shelf. What can I say?! Martha does know how to make an awesome chicken pot pie. It's a MAJOR effort, but worth every drop of sweat!!!!

(Oh, and I didn't have any fresh thyme like the recipe calls for, so I just use dried thyme - but half of what it calls for fresh.)

I've simplified it here by giving you the three major steps:
Prep time: 1 hour & 20 minutes Total time: approx. 2 hours

1.) Start cooking the chicken (1 hour cook time)
2.) Mix dough, get it in the fridge (1 hour chill time)
3.) About 20 minutes before chicken is done, cut veggies, chop parsley, measure milk, chicken stock, & flour, get casserole pan ready

STEP 1: Cook Chicken:

3-4 lbs. Chicken
4 c. Chicken Stock (or 4 c. water + 4 bullion cubes)
1 Yellow onion, split in half
2 dry bay leaves
1/2 t. whole black peppercorns (or ground pepper, whatever)
1 small bunch fresh thyme
1 rib celery, cut in 3 pieces

Combine all ingredients above in a large stockpot, add enough water to cover the chicken. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer uncovered 1 hour. When chicken is cooked, remove the chicken and reserve the stock. Remove the skin & bones, shred into bite-size strips, set aside. Strain stock and save for later.

STEP 2: Crust:

1 c. flour
1/4 t. salt
1 T. fresh thyme leaves
10 T. chilled butter, cut into small pieces (1 cube + 2 T. of another cube – save the other 5 T.)
3 T. ice water
1 egg yolk

Pick enough thyme leaves to make 3 Tablespoons. Set 2 Tablespoons aside. Combine flour, salt, thyme either in a food processor or in a medium bowl. Cut in the butter until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add ice water and egg yolk, mix until dough holds together. Try not to over mix. Turn dough out onto plastic wrap, flatten into a circle, wrap well, refrigerate at least 1 hour.

STEP 3: Filling:

Remaining 5 T. Butter
9 oz. red potatoes, scrubbed, cut into 1/2” pieces
1 large onion, diced (or 12 pearl onions, peeled & cut in half)
1 medium leek, white and light-green parts only, sliced into 1/4” thick rounds
2 carrots, peeled & cut into rounds
6 oz. mushrooms, sliced or cut into chunks
5 T. flour
2 c. reserved chicken stock (save the rest for another use.)
1 c. milk
2 T. fresh thyme
2 T. chopped, fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/2 t. fresh ground pepper
2 t. salt
Zest of 1 lemon (optional)

Heat oven to 375º. Melt 5 T. butter in large sauté pan or stockpot over medium heat. Add potatoes and onions and cook, stirring occasionally, 4-5 minutes, until potatoes begin to turn golden. Add leeks, carrots, and mushrooms, cooking 4-5 minutes more. Add 5 T. flour, and cook, stirring for 1 minute. Stir in reserved chicken stock and milk, bring to a simmer. Cook until thick and bubbly, stirring constantly, 2-3 minutes. Add reserved chicken pieces, chopped parsley, and remaining thyme, lemon zest, 2 t. salt, and ground pepper. Transfer to a large casserole dish. Set aside.

Working quickly so you keep the dough cold, roll out the dough until it is 1/4” thick, transfer to a baking sheet and chill if necessary. Otherwise, place dough over the top of the chicken mixture, tuck extra dough around the edges. Cut slits on top to allow steam to escape.

Optional: Brush top of dough with egg wash: 1 egg yolk + 1 T. heavy cream. Bake 35-40 minutes, until crust is golden. Serve hot.


DeGooyer Family said...

Abby, this is my absolute favorite recipe - I made it for the first time last winter, and even though it took forever to make, it was well worth it!

missliss5 said...

I sooo want to eat that right now---yum!

Amy Ragsdale said...

I just put it in the oven to bake. Guess what? I forgot to put the chicken in! Aaagghh! Otherwise, I am so excited to eat it.