chicken pot pie – smitten kitchen

“No kitty, that’s my pot pie!”

People, if I were savvy enough to know how to insert a voice recording of Alex doing his Cartman voice, or savvy enough to convince him to let me record it in the first place, I think we could safely say that Alex could quit his day job (hey, it’s all the rage). His impression is impeccable.

in go the vegetablesrolling the lidscutting slitsyes please

I got to hear it at least six times this week, which alone was enough reason for making Ina Garten’s Un-freaking-believable Chicken Pot Pies for dinner last night. I don’t think calling this recipe a “hit” even halfway does it justice. They are fantastic, transcendent. Lumped in a toasty category with Chicken and Dumplings, they were so good that I almost wished it was 20 degrees colder–an absolute sacrilege in a place that has the nerve to stay winter-like through May–when this recipe will be no doubt dusted off again.

And again.

best part

A new chicken pot pie: Six years later, I decided it was time for a new chicken pot pie. The new one use a small fraction of the butter and steps, plus my favorite ridiculously flaky crust, all cooked in one big pot, to yield my new platonic ideal of pot pie. Check it out here.

One year ago: Creamy White Polenta with Mushrooms

All Thanksgiving, All the Time: Look there, over yonder! [Points to the left sidebar.] Hey, I know what you’re really here for–you want Thanksgiving recipes, and you want them now. Of course, what my families eat on Thanksgiving (shrimp cocktail, anyone? caviar and crepes?) and what yours may are likely entirely different. Nevertheless, I have rounded up dozens of more traditional appetizers, sides and desserts that would be welcome at any gathering in the Thanksgiving index. Still stumped? Check out the pages Apple, Pumpkin and Squash and Soup topic indexes. Even stumped after that? Just Search (upper left, right under the logo) to find any recipe on this site by keyword.

Chicken Pot Pie
Adapted from Ina Garten

3 whole (6 split) chicken breasts, bone-in, skin-on (we used 2 whole/4 split large ones; worked fine)
3 tablespoons olive oil
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
5 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade
2 chicken bouillon cubes (if you, like us, use Better than Bouillon, the exchange is 4 teaspoons)
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
2 cups yellow onions, chopped (2 onions)
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup heavy cream
2 cups medium-diced carrots, blanched for 2 minutes
1 (10-ounce) package frozen peas (2 cups)
1 1/2 cups frozen small whole onions (apparently, Birds Eye sells these; I’ve never found them and peeled fresh ones), blanched for 2 minutes (can do this with the carrots)
Glug of sherry (optional)
1/2 cup minced fresh parsley leaves

For the pastry:
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup (2 sticks or 1/2 pound or 8 ounces) cold unsalted butter, diced
1/2 to 2/3 cup ice water
1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash
Flaked sea salt and cracked black pepper

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Place the chicken breasts on a baking sheet and rub them with olive oil. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Roast for 35 to 40 minutes, or until cooked through. Set aside until cool enough to handle, then remove the meat from the bones and discard the skin. Cut the chicken into large dice. You will have 4 to 6 cups of cubed chicken. (We did this a day in advance.)

In a small saucepan, heat the chicken stock and dissolve the bouillon cubes in the stock. In a large pot or Dutch oven, melt the butter and saute the onions over medium-low heat for 10 to 15 minutes, until translucent. Add the flour and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes. Add the hot chicken stock to the sauce. Simmer over low heat for 1 more minute, stirring, until thick. Add 2 teaspoons 1 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and heavy cream. Add the cubed chicken, carrots, peas, onions, parsley and a glug of sherry, if you’re using it. Mix well. Adjust seasonings to taste.

For the pastry, mix the flour, salt, and baking powder in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Add the butter and mix quickly with your fingers until each piece is coated with flour. Pulse 10 times, or until the fat is the size of peas. With the motor running, add the ice water; process only enough to moisten the dough and have it just come together. Dump the dough out onto a floured board and knead quickly into a ball. Wrap the dough in plastic and allow it to rest in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. (This can also be made a day or more in advance.)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Divide the filling equally among 4 ovenproof bowls. Divide the dough into quarters and roll each piece into an 8-inch circle. Brush the outside edges of each bowl with the egg wash, then place the dough on top. Trim the circle to 1/2-inch larger than the top of the bowl. Crimp the dough to fold over the side, pressing it to make it stick. Brush the dough with egg wash and make 3 slits in the top. Sprinkle with sea salt and cracked pepper. Place on a baking sheet and bake for 1 hour, or until the top is golden brown and the filling is bubbling hot.

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