Alas, I have no photo for this post. You'll have to imagine a piping hot pie with golden crust, lovely green peas and succulent chunks of chicken peeping out of the vent holes. My 7 year old has a passion for all things gravy, and chicken pot pie happens to combine all of her favorite elements into one tidy dish. In the past, I usually made the filling, then topped it with a thick biscuit layer. Then last year, a very sweet friend of mine showed up on my doorstep when I was having a bad day with a chicken pot pie encased in an actual crust. Rachel was thrilled, and begs me to make it that way on a regular basis.
It's not rocket science, and really, you can shift the vegetables around to different types and different ratios to whatever pleases your palate, but this is how I made it last night and got rave reviews from the peanut gallery.
Rachel's Rosemary Chicken Pot Pie
Double crust for a 10" pie plate*
1 medium sweet vidalia onion, diced
2 cups diced carrots
4 T. butter, divided
2 raw chicken breasts, diced into 1/2" chunks
2 t. garlic powder
1 t. minced dried or fresh rosemary
1/2 t. dried thyme
few grinds each of salt and pepper
1/3 cup unbleached all purpose flour
1 can low sodium chicken broth
1 cup frozen peas
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. In a medium size nonstick frying pan, melt 2 T. of butter over medium heat. Stir in the carrots and onion and saute, stirring occasionally, for about 5-6 minutes until the onions are soft. Remove to a bowl and set aside. Melt the other 2 T. of butter and add the chicken to the same pan. Saute for about 7-8 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through. Season with the garlic powder, rosemary, thyme, salt and pepper, stir in the carrot and onion mixture, then stir in the flour until the chicken chunks are evenly coated. Pour the broth into the pan and stir until the flour is dissolved and it begins to thicken. Add in the peas last, then remove from heat.
Place the bottom crust into a 10" pie pan. Pour the filling mixture in and spread in an even layer, taking care to not let it slurp over the edges. Keep the flat top edge clean so that it'll seal well. Dip your fingertips with a little water and moisten the top edge all the way around. Cut vent slits into the top crust, then center it on top of the filling. Press the edges together to seal, trim the excess crust, and flute the edges.
If you want to get all fancy, beat an egg and brush it on top of the crust, then sprinkle with sesame seeds. Otherwise, pop it into the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes, until the crust is golden.
This is a very hearty and filling pie, and will serve 6.
*This is where I confess that I haven't found a homemade pie crust recipe that comes out consistently well for me, and I resorted to being a slacker and used a Pillsbury crust. I figured out their secret when I read the label - they use lard! Appetizing, eh? Shortening already gives me the squiggies, but I use it because some recipes really need it, but I can assure you that a tub o' lard will never grace my pantry shelves.