Friday, December 26, 2014

Chicken Pot Pie

Chicken Pot Pie, my one favorite comfort food in addition to a good old-school, home-style baked macaroni and cheese. I love the flavors that warm your heart, soul and tummy... like a big hug from the inside out!  Slow cooked tender chicken, fresh vegetables, fragrant herbs and flaky buttery crusts that melt in your mouth...what could be better?!!!!?!

Everyone has their own recipe and no ones is better than your mothers or your grandma's (I get it), but what I'm going to share are a few different ways to serve up a basic recipe that can also be turned into a delicious Cream of Chicken Soup!

I'm a big fan of the "soup starters" you can find in the produce section of your local markets that typically have a carrot, onion, parsnip, turnip, celery and fresh herbs such as parsley and dill. This variety of vegetables gives the traditional pot pie a fresher, sweeter flavor. Low sodium chicken stock and a roaster chicken will set you back less than 20 dollars for a completely satisfying meal.

Now, of course the filling is important but what about the crust? Biscuit topping, puffed pastry or the traditional pie crust? Whatever the choice, your preference is what will make your "famous" chicken pot pie your own!

  • 3/4 cup margarine
  • 1 soup starter packet or 2 cups total small to medium diced carrots, celery, onion, etc.
  • 1 Tablespoon each fresh chopped dill & parsley
  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 1/2 cups low sodium chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 3 cups shredded cooked chicken

In saucepan, melt butter over medium - low heat. Add diced vegetables and cook for 2 minutes, stirring frequently, until tender. Stir in flour until well blended. Gradually stir in broth and milk, cooking and stirring until bubbly and thickened.
Stir in chicken and herbs; remove from heat. Taste and adjust seasonings with salt and pepper as desired. Spoon chicken mixture into crust-lined pan or individual baking dishes. Top with second crust or biscuit topping. Bake according to directions or approximately 30 to 40 minutes or until crust /biscuits are golden brown at 425 degrees.
I'm always looking for inventive ways to use up leftovers.  So if we are having a second or third round of pot pie, I take the above mixture and add 1 cup of chicken stock and 1/2 cup heavy cream over low heat to make a delicious cream of chicken soup.  If you'd like to really spice things up, the addition of a little hot sauce makes a delicious Cream of Buffalo Chicken Soup off with Cheddar & Scallion Baked Biscuits and you will be sure to have rave reviews, especially if you are entertaining a football crowd!!!

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