So, I claimed that this blog would help you to make a variety of dishes from similar ingredients without having to eat the same flavors over & over again. I’ve, so far, not been very good about following my mission statement. I’m working on it.
So let’s think about what we’ve got in the fridge from chicken noodle soup. Carrots, celery, a little leftover chicken, fresh thyme. Maybe a little broth. OK. OK. What else? We always have milk, butter, and flour. Okay. I’ve got it. We’ll make little Sunday night pot pies, one to share or to make everyone jealous about at work!
Mini Chicken Pot Pies
yields 2 pot pies
For the recipe, I am using Calphalon mini pie pans. There is no way I can eat a traditional sized pie by myself. Also, I am over the moon at how precious these pans are!
1 cup flour
pinch of salt
6 T. cold butter
4-6 T. cold water
In a mixing bowl, combine the flour and salt. Cut the butter into the dry ingredients using a pastry blender. Keep working the butter into the flour until the combination looks like a coarse grain. Gradually work the cold water into the dough until a soft dough forms. Cover tightly in plastic wrap & place in freezer (if doing this quickly) or fridge for later on.
Moving onto the sauce now…
1 T. butter
1 T. + 1 t. flour
3 T. milk
1/2 c. chicken or veggie broth
salt & pepper, to taste
a pinch of cayenne pepper
In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the flour and stir quickly to coat. Allow it to cook for 30 sec-1 min. Add the broth & milk. Season to taste. Continue to heat until the sauce thickens. Remove from heat & set aside.
Moving on to the filling…
1 T. butter
1 small carrot, chopped
1/2 c. onion, minced
1/3 c. peas, frozen are fine
1 c. shredded chicken, cooked (I used leftover from a rotisserie)
2 stalks celery, thinly chopped
1 sprig thyme, leaves only
In a small saute pan over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the minced onions & thyme. Allow the onions to saute for about 3, or until they start to lose their rigidity and color. Add the celery & carrot and continue to saute for another 3 minutes or so.
**We want the veggies to be softened, but it is important to remember that they still have a little bit of time to cook in the oven. I like them to keep a little crunch in the pies, so try not to cook them down to mush.
In the final moments, add the chicken and peas and heat until everything is warm. Oh and preheat the oven to 375 degrees! We’re almost there!
Time to assemble!
Roll out the dough on a clean working surface. The dough should be pretty thin, but keep it thick enough to move easily without tearing.
Turn the pie pans upside down on the rolled dough. Cut around the outside, leaving about 1/2 in. extra dough around the outside. Do this four times total. You will need one for the pan and one for the top.
Press the first circle down into the pie pans.
Distribute the veggie & chicken mix evenly between the pie pans. Don’t be afraid to stack it in there! It will make hearty pies! Next, ladle the sauce over the top of the mix, not covering the ingredients completely, but enough to create a semi-even surface near top of the pan.
Now take the other crust and cover your pie, pressing the doughs together with your fingertips over the rim of the pan. If you can do a decorate edge, this is your time to shine. If you are just hungry and sick of dealing with crusts, press firmly with your fingers or use a fork to create a pattern around the edge. Cut any excess dough off with a dull knife.
With a scoring knife, create a slit in the top of the pie to create an outlet for steam. Place in the oven and let bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the dough is firm and slightly golden.
Remove from oven & let cool for 5 or so minutes. Gently remove pies from pan and enjoy! Try not to burn your tongue!