The pickle man

Monday, March 14, 2011

It's (Chicken Pot) Pi(e) Day!

Did you know today was Pi Day?  As in 3.14 = pi (or March 14).  In case any of you doubted my utter nerdiness :)

Like that - pi! on a pie! (got the idea from a pie posted by a friend on facebook)

In celebration, I made chicken pot pie.

This recipe is a loose adaptation of the one featured in Southern Living Magazine in February.  I say loose because I read the recipe while I was waiting in the pediatrician's office (the baby is sick) and then cooked based on what I remembered and what I had on hand.

I know that pie part was puff pastry shells, never a bad place to start.
I took the puff pastry shells out of the fridge to defrost (45 minutes).  Meanwhile, I roasted some chicken and potatoes in the oven (after sprinkling them with salt, pepper, and olive oil).
I used Yukon golds.  Southern Living recommends a frozen hash brown product.

I could have eaten the potatoes off this plate.

By then, the puff pastry was ready, so I draped it into a deep dish pie plate.

Then I put in a bunch of stuff in the freezer/ fridge.  I started with 3 carrots I shredded using a box grater.  This was the most labor intensive part of the process, so buy pre-shredded or chop (if you are in a hurry).  I also threw in a few (2) chopped green onions.  You could use yellow onions or (as per Souther Living) leeks.  I had green onions in the fridge, so I used those. 

And I threw in a handful of frozen green peas.  I did not bother to defrost. 

Then I shredded the chicken with a fork and threw that in, along with the potatoes. 
I know, he doesn't look that sick, but he was!

Then I made a stovetop cream sauce.  If you don't feel like doing that (or you loved the 1970s!) substitute a can of Cream of ___ condensed soup - celery, mushroom, chicken, you decide.

To make the stovetop cream sauce, melt 3 tablespoons of butter, stir in 3 tablespoons of flour, and cook over medium-high heat for 5-6 minutes, stirring.  Whisk in chicken broth - 1 1/2 cups or a can.

Season the sauce with poultry seasoning.  Pour on top of the yummy-ness inside the puff pastry.
Put the other puff pastry crust on top (you may need to roll it a little to make it big enough).

Put a clever design in the top and push a fork around the edges to make it pretty :)
Optional: brush with a beaten egg white.

Bake at 350 for 45-60 minutes.


Condensed recipe:
2 puff pastry sheets, defrosted
2 medium chicken breasts
2 small Yukon gold potatoes, diced
1 tablespoon olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
3 carrots, shredded
2 green onions, chopped
1/2 cup frozen green peas
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
1 1/2 cups chicken stock or canned broth
1 Tablespoon poultry seasoning (or sage, thyme, garlic, etc)
1 beaten egg white (optional)

Defrost and roll out the puff pastry sheets.
Bake the chicken and diced potatoes on a cookie sheet at 375 for 40 minutes (while the defrosting is going on).  You can substitute grocery rotisserie chicken and frozen hash browns for this step.

Put one puff pastry sheet in the bottom of a pie crust.  Layer in the cooked chicken, potatoes, green onions, peas, and carrots.

Make a sauce by melting 3 tablespoons of butter, adding the flour, and cooking 5 minutes.  Whisk in the chicken broth and poultry seasonings.  Pour over the pie crust.

Top with the other puff pastry shell.  Brush with a beaten egg white.  Cut slits in the shell.  Bake at 350 for 45 - 55 minutes (until brown).