Chicken Pot Pie

Posted in Bacon, Comfort Foods, Fall, Main Course, Savory, Winter on Jan 08, 2010

036The weather around here has been chilly and socked-in with fog, and I’ve been craving comfort foods like crazy. Everyone has their own favorites, but one of mine has always been chicken pot pie. While cruising around the internet looking for possible recipes, I came across a beauty of a pot pie recipe at Nicole Aloni’s inspirational blog A Conscious Feast.

Seriously, go marvel at it.

While I loved the list of ingredients she had put together, I wanted to use the veggies and seasonings we already had on hand. What really made an impression was the glorious photo that accompanied her recipe. Ooh, I thought. I have RAMEKINS. And The Boy loves him some puff pastry. Without further ado, here’s what we started with:

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  • two thin carrots, sliced
  • two medium potatoes, peeled and diced
  • one leek, white and light green parts, finely diced  (is that minced?)
  • two ribs of celery, sliced
  • three cloves of garlic, minced (if that means cut up really super tiny)
  • parsley
  • butter
  • flour
  • chicken stock (heck yeah it is Emeril’s.  BAM!)
  • black pepper
  • Season-All Salt (The Boy loves this stuff.)
  • 1 sheet of frozen puff pastry
  • 1 12.5 oz can of white chicken in “Premium Chunk” variety

Okay, look.  About the canned chicken…the plan was to use chicken breasts, and I thought I had some in the freezer, but I didn’t.  This is totally becoming a theme with this blog, and I might have to embrace it.  Anyhoo, realizing I was looking at a vegetable pot pie, I dipped into my stock of canned goods (which is basically like two jars of peanut butter and a couple cans of tuna, plus this one can of chicken) that I put aside for “emergency rations” about six months ago.  So, there it is, my zombiepocalypse chicken in a can.  I’m less prepared than ever, but I didn’t have to scrap my plans for chicken pot pie.  SILVER LINING.

Not pictured in the group shot was my last minute brain wave:  BACON.  Who’s a real food blogger now?  Who?
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I fried up five strips of bacon in my big 700 pound cast iron skillet, and then put the strips aside while I cleaned the pan.  The plan was to saute the garlic and onions in the butter, and then mix in an equal amount of flour to the butter, and make a roux before adding in the chicken stock so it would be all thick and rich and yummy.

But there I was, staring down a pan of bacon grease and I just threw caution to the wind.  Into the grease (about 1/4 cup total, I eyeballed it) went the onions and garlic.

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Once they started caramelizing, I sprinked in 1/4 cup all-purpose flour, and whisked it in with a fork.

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Then I added about 1 cup of chicken stock. More whisking.  Finally, I dumped in the rest of the veggies and gave them a stir.

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Next, I added the zombiepocalypse chicken and seasoned the whole mess with season-all salt and a couple of good grinds of pepper.

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Finally, I tossed in the chopped up bacon and the minced parsley, and then turned off the heat to let the mixture cool down a bit.

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While that was cooling, the Chef helped me butter my six one-cup ramekins, and then lightly coat the inside with bread crumbs.  Why this step?  I dunno, I thought it would be fun.

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Then, she cut our sheet of thawed puff pastry into six rectangles, one for each ramekin.

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Cover us!  Cover us!  The mixture filled each to the rim with no leftovers.

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We rolled out the pastry (with my pestle, no less) so that it would fit the top of each dish.

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After we fit the pastry over each ramekin, we cut a couple of slits and gave the whole thing an egg wash before popping them into a preheated 400 oven.

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Will you look at that?

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So, the kids dug them out through the top of the pastry:

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While I upended the whole thing and ate it from the bottom up:

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036The verdict?  These were simple to make, tidy to serve and flat-out delicious.  I would eat this every single day if I had the chance.  The Chef and Sous Chef and my husband were all fans of these little pot pies.

The Boy?  Despite the super-happy expression here, I did have to brow-beat just a little bit to get him to eat more than the pastry.  But eat he did, over half of what was on his plate.  Carrots, potatoes, leeks, onions, parsley, celery – he ate it all with a minimum of gorking.

Could bacon be the answer?

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  1. buffi says:

    Jenny, bacon is ALWAYS the answer.



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