It’s Fall and I am starting to crave cool weather food. Chicken pot pie definitely fits the bill, although you’d never know it by desert climes. No problem. Some of you are seeing cooler weather and I am living vicariously through you!
Why is this chicken pot pie pictured on rice? Well, my mom always made pot pies family-sized with double-crusts. And the fillings were always the most amazing examples of creamy, savory, tender comfort food. They were rich and robust, but definitely on the soupy side. That way you could serve a slice of pie with some scoops of filling over a bed of rice to soak up all that soupy goodness. We’re talking flavorful Brazilian-style white rice, topped with a slice of beautifully flaky, golden pie with its creamy filling spilling out in all its savory goodness. Truly a delicious bit of home cooking heaven on a plate.
Since I really did not know how to cook when I first married Steve, all my early meals were attempts to reproduce dishes I had seen my mom make at home. I started making pot pies with soupy filling over white rice, and I have never served them any other way. My light and flaky pie crust today beats my early crust attempts to heck and back, and I finally learned how to coax big, hearty flavors from the filling.
Although my first chicken pot pie attempts had somewhat bland fillings in a somewhat tough crust, my husband never complained. I think a lot of it had to do with the fact that the Kansas boy I married was all about anything that looked and tasted like gravy. On top of that, Steve has always praised and eaten anything I took the time to cook. Even when I accidentally poured cinnamon instead of chili powder into my taco meat (but that is a story of embarrassment for another day). Luckily for him, 33 years later, my chicken pot pie has gotten much, much better. And today’s was oh so very yummy!
Speaking of Kansas, I have to explain why it has been over a week since I shared anything with you. See, Steve and I recently made the decision after 31 years of absence, to move back to Kansas to be close to family and the friends of our youth. Since my last post, I have made a house-hunting trip to Kansas, where I made an offer on a new home. Also during that week, Steve and I readied our Phoenix home for showing, and got it on the market.
Amazing what can be done in a single week. But then again, our married life has been one relocation after another, so I am not totally clueless on what needs to be done. I’m just not used to doing it all without a company relocation team carrying some of the load. Having said that, the effort is a worthwhile one, and we will get ‘er done!
In the meantime, I am a little scatter brained. Something you will see in this post. Because although the pie came out beautifully (I cook instinctively), I was a little distracted in my organization of the prep pictures. You’ll see as we go along. And because you always show me so much love, I hope you will be patient and tolerant of my little hiccups over the next several weeks or so, as I juggle a couple of balls too many.
So, are you ready for an amazing, home cooked, comfort food meal?
let’s make some soupy chicken pot pie
This is what you need for the filling…PLUS what I included in the recipe but failed to add to the ingredients picture. See, I told you I was scatter brained! YOU ALSO NEED some celery seed and some Mrs. Dash Table Blend (the one with the dark green lid). Not judging, right? 🙂
And this is what you need for the crust. Again, I missed the extra egg and water for the egg wash needed to brush the top crust before baking. Still not judging, I hope. I really love you all!
Start with the filling. It needs enough time to cool before pouring it into the pie shell. If the filling is too hot, it will start melting the fat in the pie crusts before it goes into the oven, which makes sealing the top crust more difficult and makes your crust tougher than it should be.
Melt the butter in a large soup pan, then add the chicken, onion, and garlic. Sauté just until the chicken is cooked through.
Then add the flour and stir until it forms a paste around the other ingredients.
Next, add the chicken broth, rosemary, thyme, celery seed, and Mrs. Dash Table Blend. Stir to mix well.
Finally, add the cream, the frozen veggies and salt and black pepper to taste.
Stir and cook until the mixture thickens to the consistency of a hearty cream of potato soup or a thick chowder. Allowing it to cook for a bit will get rid of the taste of raw flour as well as allow the cream to reduce a bit and act as another thickening agent.
Set the filling aside and allow it to cool to lukewarm or room temperature. When the filling has cooled, stir in the fresh parsley.
As soon as the filling is finished cooking, prepare the pie crust. I’ve shared a version of this crust recipe before in my heart of palm pie post. The difference is that for this chicken pot pie, I used less shortening, and since I did not have buttermilk, I added white vinegar to milk.
Whisk the egg into the milk and vinegar, then set aside.
Cut the shortening (using a pastry cutter) into the salted flour until you get a mix of pea-sized crumbles.
Then pour the egg, milk, and vinegar mixture over the flour and shortening mix.
Using a spatula (not your hands), press and fold the ingredients until it clumps together into a consistent dough mixture. It’s important not to use your hands. The heat from your hands will melt the shortening, making your crust less light and flaky.
Once you have a consistent, clumped dough, quickly shape it into an oblong with your hands. Roll it in plastic wrap and put it into the refrigerator to chill.
When the filling has cooled and the crust is chilled, assemble the chicken pot pie.
Cut the crust in half and roll out one half between sheets of plastic wrap. Remove the plastic wrap from the top side, turn the crust into a deep-dish pie plate, and peel off the bottom layer of plastic wrap. Trim any excess dough along the edge of the plate.
Trim the top crust by removing excess dough along the edge of the pie plate. Seal with a fork, brush with an egg wash, and then cut some venting slits on top.
Then place it on a baking sheet in case any of the filling decides it needs to bubble past the pie pan. Then bake…
…until golden brown. While the pie is baking, prepare your rice.
When the pie is ready, remove it from the oven and allow it to cool for about 15 minutes. The filling will be too runny while it is very hot. It needs to cool for a bit and re-thicken.
Then cut a wedge of pie, spoon some rice onto a plate, and place a wedge of chicken pot pie on the rice. Feel free to spoon a little of the soupy filling over the rice too.
Tender, rich dark meat. Savory, creamy gravy. Tasty, Fall mixed veggies. Wrapped in a flaky and savory, buttery crust. All the extra soupy goodness seeping into the rice so you can keep enjoying bite after bite. Homemade comfort food heaven, just I said. I’m ready for Fall and cold Kansas winters. Bring it on!
- FOR THE FILLING
- 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed of excess fat and cut into 1-inch cubes
- ¼ cup butter
- 1 cup onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 cups mixed frozen veggies
- ¼ cup flour
- 2 cups chicken broth
- ½ cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
- 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, chopped
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley
- ¼ teaspoon celery seed
- 1 teaspoon Mrs. Dash Table Blend
- Fresh cracked pepper
- FOR THE CRUST
- 3 cups flour
- 1¼ cup shortening
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 5 tablespoons milk
- 1 teaspoon white vinegar
- 2 large eggs, separated (one for the water and egg wash)
- 2 tablespoons water
- Sauté the chicken, onion and garlic in butter until cooked through and aromatic.
- Add the flour and stir until it forms a paste around the cooked ingredients.
- Add the remaining ingredients except the parsley and cook until it thickens to the consistency of a hearty cream of potato soup or a chowder.
- Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature or at least lukewarm.
- When cooled, stir in the fresh parsley.
- While the filling is cooling, prepare the crust.
- Whisk the egg, milk, and vinegar until well blended.
- In a large bowl, cut the shortening into the flour and salt until the mixture resembles pea-sized crumbles.
- Add the milk and egg mixture, pressing and stirring until the dough clumps together cohesively.
- Quickly shape into an oblong with your hands, wrap in plastic wrap and chill for about an hour in the refrigerator.
- Pre-heat an oven to 375°
- When the filing has cooled and the dough is chilled, cut the dough ball in half and roll one half out for the bottom crust.
- Line a deep-dish pie plate with the crust, then pour the filling into the prepared shell.
- Roll out the top crust, top the pie, cut any excess crust from the edges, seal with a fork.
- Mix the second egg and water to form an egg wash.
- Brush the egg wash over the top crust. Then vent by cutting some symmetrical slits into the top crust.
- Place on a metal baking sheet and bake for 40 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.
- Allow the pie to cool for about 15 minutes. Serve pie wedges and soupy filling over a bed of Brazilian-style white rice.