It’s snowing! Grant took the kids sledding on this cold and snowy afternoon, so I wanted to make sure they had something warm, hearty, and comforting to come home to. One of my favorite comfort foods has always been chicken pot pie. In fact, I cannot think of one person I have ever known that does not love this satisfying and savory dish.
Growing up my Mom would whip up individual pies for each family member. My sister and I would stand at the oven door peeking at the pies as they browned, hoping they would hurry up! The entire house would be filled with the soothing smells of rosemary, thyme, roasted chicken, and buttery crust. The creamy sauce would be bubbling over through the shapes she slit on the tops of the pie crusts, and we would wish we were there to catch and eat those delicious drippings as they sizzled from the baking pies. I am quite certain the we bickered over which pie would become ours! Being the older sister, she always got first choice. Hmm, does that sound familiar to all of those younger siblings?!
Chicken pot pie has many variations from the crust type of puff or flaky, to the filling using leftover or fresh chicken, frozen or cut veggies, to the double or single crust. No matter how you make a chicken pot pie the result is pure comfort and a culinary delight. My recipe for chicken pot pie uses freshly roasted chicken breasts, a flaky all-butter pie crust, and a combination of fresh vegetables with frozen peas. The sauce is creamy and herbed, with just a touch of turmeric and curry powder for extra warmth.
The two essential elements of a chicken pot pie will include your crust and your filling. Remember to give yourself time to prepare the crust, as it will need time to chill. These pies also need time to some time to cool after baking.
The first step is to roast your chicken breasts. You will brush them with olive oil and an herbal mix of Rosemary, Thyme, salt, and pepper. These breasts will be shredded, so they will also need time to cool off a bit after roasting.
The Pie Crust
While the chicken breasts are roasting in the oven, begin preparing your pie crust. Bea loves pushing buttons, so before this sledder headed off to the hills, she of course wanted to help for this part. In your food processor, you will pulse your flour with the salt and sugar. If you are using dried thyme add it here as well.
Add in your cold, cubed butter.
Pulse the mixture until it is fully incorporated.
Next, slowly pour in your ice cold water while the food processor is on.
And let it go until it balls up to a dough pile.
Take the dough out of the food processor and form a disc (or two), and wrap it up to chill for at least an hour. The pie crust recipe will yield either two pie crusts or 6 mini pie crusts that top coquettes. I made individual mini chicken pot pies that had only a top crust.
Once your chicken has cooled off a bit shred it so you have about 2 cups.I prefer shredding with my fingers so I can remove any skin, bones, and gristle. It’s also way more fun!
Chop up onions, carrots, and celery.
In your dutch oven, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Then sautee your chopped vegetables with a bay leaf until the onions are transluscent and the carrots have softened.
Add your garlic, herbs, turmeric, and curry powder. Sautee an extra minute until fragrant. Then sprinkle on your flour. Flour will be your thickening agent. Without it you would have a broth rather than a thick and creamy filling. Then you will pour in your warm chicken broth and heavy cream. As you can see, the chicken pot pie filling will be thin at first and then thicken as it simmers.
Tip: Whether you use homemade or store-bought chicken broth, let it warm and add in your chicken broth base/seasoning or chicken bouillon. I always add extra seasoning at this stage. This will enhance your filling with a great boost of flavor and depth. If you are using a broth base you will use 1 heaping teaspoon. Add in your frozen peas.
After you add the liquid make sure to remove your bay leaf. You don’t want a bay leaf surprise ending up in one of the pies!
Remove your pie crust from the fridge.
Line up 6 coquettes onto a baking sheet and get them filled up with your rich and creamy chicken pot pie filling.
Make 6 discs of pie crust and roll each out. Top each pie and crimp around the edges. Make a couple of slits for venting or prick out a pattern. I labeled each pie to try to prevent any bickering over the chicken pot pies!
Then beat up and egg and brush over the top of each pie. This will give you that golden and shiny crust.
Then bake the mini chicken pot pies and let cool before devouring!
Chicken Pot Pie
For Savory Pie Crust:
- 2 1/8 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 2 sticks cold butter cut into cubes\
- 4-5 tablespoons cold water
- 1/4 teaspoon of dried thyme (optional)
- 2 Bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts.
- 1 medium onion
- 2 carrots, peeled
- 2 celery stalks
- 1 garlic minced
- 5 tablespoons of flour
- 2 cups of warm chicken broth with 1 teaspoon of chicken broth seasoning
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 teaspoon each of fresh:
- thyme, rosemary (plus extra for roasting chicken)
- 1/4 teaspoon each of dried:
- celery seed, ground -turmeric & curry powder
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/2 cup frozen peas
- 1 beaten egg and a 1/2 teaspoon of water for egg wash
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Make your pie crust. In a food processor, pulse flour, sugar, and salt. Then add your cold butter cubes and process until it looks like tiny pebbles. Slowly drizzle in very cold water through the top while food processor is going. Once a dough ball, remove then make a disc and refrigerate for an hour.
- Brush chicken with olive oil then sprinkle with salt, pepper, and a sprinkle of thyme and rosemary. Roast for approx. 40 minutes. Allow to cool before shredding. Discard skin, bones, and gristle.
- In your dutch oven, sautee your onion, celery, carrots, and bay leaf. After a few minutes add in garlic and the rest of your herbs and spices. THen sprinkle on flour.
- Slowly add your chicken broth while stirring. Then add the cream. Let simmer for a few minutes.
- Fill your cocottes.
- Roll out 6 mini pie crusts and brush the sides of each cocotte with eggwash before topping each cocottes. Crimp edges. Brush egg wash. and cut a slit.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes.
- Let cool an hour before eating.
- There is only a small amount of both turmeric and curry powder to add flavor depth and color to this filling. Children and those with dislike for “spicy” food will not have any problem devouring this, as it is not too hot with spice.
- Indian celery seed is the ideal spice to bring together the herbs of thyme and rosemary with the spices of turmeric and curry powder. It is a small dried seed that is readily available at grocers such as Whole Foods or find it online here – Celery Seed Tin.
If you loved this recipe, check out some more comfort food! Turkey Shepherd’s Pie (Cottage Pie)
And don’t forget dessert! https://ritzymom.com/2017/10/16/decadent-dark-chocolate-brownies/
Interested in what I used for this recipe?