Chicken Pot Pie
This is one of the most versatile dinners I know. Basically, it follows the concept of “slather it in béchamel sauce and/or top it with pie crust and it’ll probably be delicious.”
Originally, I was going to call this “leftover pot pie,” because I took these photos around Thanksgiving when leftovers were all everyone was talking about. And honestly, the way I usually make it is with a mess of leftovers, but leftovers pot pie doesn’t sound that appetizing.
My point is that you can make this pie with pretty much any kind of vegetables or protein in the filling. Got some leftover chicken from that one you roasted earlier this week? It’ll work perfectly. A few herby carrot sticks that you didn’t finish from today’s afternoon snack? Chop ’em up and chuck ’em in. Some garlicky greens hanging out in your fridge? Naturally. You can also make this in almost any oven-safe vessel: a deep dish pie pan is traditional, but feel free to mess with individual mini-pies (like I did), 8-inch square baking pans, or cast-iron skillets.
Chicken Pot Pie
Makes 1 deep-dish pie or 3 5-inch individual pies.
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
1 cup chicken stock
1 1/2 cups milk
3-4 cups various vegetables, raw or cooked (diced carrots, celery, onions, potatoes, broccoli, or cauliflower; sliced mushrooms, peas, corn, halved green beans, spinach, cooked beans)
2 cups shredded, cooked chicken (or turkey, or sausage, or pork, or beef…)
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 recipe pie crust
Heat the oven to 375°F (190°C).
Place the butter in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. When the butter melts, add the flour and stir. Cook for 3-5 minutes, until the mixture is a light tan color and smells nutty. Slowly whisk in the chicken stock and milk until incorporated, then simmer for another 5-6 minutes until the mixture is thick.
Stir the vegetables and cooked chicken (or other protein) into the sauce and stir to combine. If the mixture is too thick for your taste, add a dash more milk or stock. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper as needed.
Roll out the pie crust, either in one piece if you’re making one big pie, or break the dough into three pieces and roll each piece out if you’re making small pies. Roll to about 1/8-inch thickness, or large enough to completely cover your pie plate(s).
Fill your pie pan(s) with the chicken and vegetable mixture and top the pie(s) with the rolled crust(s). Cut a few slits in the top of the crust so steam can escape, and press all around the outside edges so the crust sticks to the pie pan(s). Whisk the egg with a dash of water and brush it on the crust(s).
Bake for 30 minutes, or until crust is golden brown and the filling is heated through. Serve immediately.
Music to cook by: It All Feels the Same [Tennis // Young & Old]