So, remember like two months ago I made my own delightful pulled chicken and promised to make chicken pot pie out of some of it? Yeah, I sort of just filed those pictures away so they wouldn’t taunt me during Passover, and promptly forgot. Which is a shame, because for some reason folks don’t tend to want to eat pot pies in the middle of June.
But you know what? I made these with delightful spring vegetables, and they were yummy, so you should give them a shot. Honestly, the shredded chicken and veggies felt much lighter than I expected them to in this dish, partly because I dangerously overfilled the pot pies, partly because I didn’t use much liquid broth or cream.The result really did have more the sense of a savory pie than of a stew baked into a crust. Which is good, because stew is perilously close to soup, and I don’t eat soup. But the lightness really made these feel suited to a summer picnic. I would love to substitute some lovely flaky white fish for the chicken and eat this all summer long.
Ingredients (makes 4 pot pies. I tried to stuff all that filling into two.)
For the dough:
3/4 cup flour
5 T cold butter
1/2 t salt
1/2 t mustard powder or white pepper or (why didn’t I think of this before?!) cayenne
2-3 T ice water
For the filling:
1 cup pulled chicken
1 cup mixed cooked vegetables (I used peas, carrots, artichoke hearts, and asparagus)
4 small red potatoes (Optional. These are totally why my pies were overfilled.)
2-3 cloves garlic
1 cup chicken stock
4 T cream or whole milk
Preheat the oven to 425°F. Start with the crust.
Dump all ingredients except the water into a food processor, process until grainy, and add the water bit by bit until the dough just comes together into a ball.
Roll half of the dough very thin. The other half is for the top crust. Save it for later. Butter your pot pie dishes (I used largish ramekins) and use the rolled dough to line the bottom and sides of the dishes.
It’s okay to make a mess with this (I sure did), because you eat them right out of the dish and no one will ever know. Unless you put photographic evidence of the mess on the Internet. Put the other half of the dough into the fridge for now.
Slap a bowl of aluminum foil over each ramekin and fill with
disused stone chess pieces pie weights. Bake for ten minutes, remove the foil and pie weights, and bake another 10 minutes uncovered. It should smell of awesomeness and be buttery golden-brown.
Set the happy little pastry cups aside and assemble the filling. I wanted boiled potatoes in mine, so I chopped four little red potatoes into eighths (that fraction always looks like it’s spelled wrong to me), and popped them into a pot of chicken broth to boil. I know, normal people use water, but this was brilliant and I would do it again.
Toss the cooked chicken and vegetables and taters in a bowl. Mr. B and I have a difference of opinion regarding vegetables. He hates cooked carrots and peas of all kinds, and he is wrong and I am right because both of these things are delicious. This is an easy dish to make modular; just mix your different ingredients in different bowls and pile into the parbaked pie shells.
You may notice that I overfilled these pies. I didn’t want any filling to go to waste. I could, of course, have just served the leftover filling over rice some other night. That did not occur to me at the time.
Pour 2 T of cream over each pie, then pour 1/2 cup of broth over each. This will not make the crust soggy, but will keep the filling nice and moist while it bakes. Roll out the chilled crust dough and lay a flap of it over each pie.
Cut vents in the top of each crust, and bake 20-25 minutes at 425°F. We’re looking for golden and crisp, as usual.
Serve with a salad or some chilled fruit. After all, it’s summer now. We’re trying to keep things light, right?