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Mama’s Kitchen: Chicken Pot Pie

best chicken pot pie recipeThere’s nothing more classically home-cooked American than good ol’ chicken pot pie.  I had wanted to try this recipe with my turkey left overs from Thanksgiving but that didn’t happen.  This recipe was inspired by one I found on but rather than make my own dough, I used puff pastry.  Honestly, puff pastry is amazing – why give yourself the extra work?  I really loved the way this dish turned out – and even though I haven’t tried it yet, substituting turkey for the chicken will absolutely work.  I have a feeling chicken pot pie will be keeping my belly warm this winter.  I hope it keeps your belly warm too!

Original recipe from Fine Cooking

Puff Pastry, slightly thawed
5 Tbs. olive oil
2-1/2 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs or breasts
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 lb. medium cremini mushrooms, quartered (2 cups)
1-1/2 cups frozen pearl onions, thawed and patted dry
4 medium carrots, peeled and sliced 1/2 inch-thick (1-1/2 cups)
3 medium cloves garlic, minced
2 oz. (4 Tbs.) unsalted butter, cut into 3 pieces
2-1/4 oz. (1/2 cup) unbleached all-purpose flour
3 cups lower-salt chicken broth
1 cup half-and-half or heavy cream
1-3/4 lb. red potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch dice (5 cups)
1 cup frozen petite peas, thawed
1 cup corn
1/4 cup dry sherry
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 Tbs. chopped fresh thyme
1-1/2 Tbs. Dijon mustard

Heat 2 Tbs. of the oil in a 7- to 8-quart Dutch oven over medium-high heat until very hot. Generously season the chicken with salt and pepper. Working in two batches, brown the chicken well on both sides, 4 to 5 minutes per side, adding 1 Tbs. oil with the second batch. Transfer the chicken to a cutting board and cut into 3/4- to 1-inch pieces (it’s fine if the chicken isn’t fully cooked; it will finish cooking later). Put the chicken in a large bowl.

Add 1 Tbs. oil to the pot and heat over medium-high heat until hot. Add the mushrooms. Cook without stirring for 1 minute. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until well browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer the mushrooms to the bowl of chicken.

Reduce the heat to medium and add the remaining 1 Tbs. oil and then the onions and carrots to the pot. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the edges are browned, 8 to 9 minutes. Add the garlic and stir constantly until fragrant, about 30 seconds more. Scrape the vegetables into the bowl of chicken and mushrooms.

Melt the butter in the same pot over low heat. Add the flour and cook, whisking constantly, until the texture, which will be clumpy at first, loosens and smooths out, about 4 minutes. Slowly whisk in the chicken broth and half-and-half. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, whisking to scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Reduce the heat to low and add the potatoes, chicken, and vegetables (and any accumulated juice), and a generous pinch each of salt and pepper. Partially cover the pot and simmer gently (adjusting the heat as necessary), stirring occasionally, until the potatoes and carrots are just tender, 15 to 18 minutes. Stir in the peas, sherry, parsley, thyme, and mustard. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Distribute the filling evenly among six ovenproof bowls or ramekins that are 2 to 3 inches deep and hold at least 2 cups.

Take the slightly thawed puff pastry and cover each bowl or ramekin and cut around the bowl so that there is enough dough to seal the edge. If the puff pastry is not pre-perforated, cut an x (or if you’re feeling creative some other shape) in the center of the dough.

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 425°F. Put the pot pies on a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet. Bake until the filling is bubbling and the crust is deep golden-brown, about 45 minutes. Cool on a rack for 20 to 30 minutes before serving.

Buon Apetito!

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