Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Chicken Pot Pies

I've been on sort of a Martha Stewart binge lately. The food is delicious, the labor is... intense. No one ever said Martha was known for her simplicity. I started these Chicken Pot Pies around 6 pm one Sunday night and we were lucky to be eating by 10. It may have been the same night I was prepping my apple-strawberry crisp (recipe to come), but either way, this is no 30 minute meal.

4 T. unsalted butter
1 medium onion, medium dice
1 large carrot, medium dice
1/2 c. all-purpose flour, plus more
course salt and ground pepper
4 c. low sodium chicken broth
3 c. cooked chicken, cut into 1 inch pieces (~1 lb)
1 c. frozen peas
1 1/2 t. chopped fresh thyme leaves
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed
1 large egg yolk
In a large saucepan, melt butter over medium. Add the onion and carrot and cook until the onion softens, about 5-6 minutes. Add flour and 1/2 t. salt; cook, stirring frequently until the misture is pale golden (Martha says, "until it has a slightly nutty aroma") and is the texture of cooked oatmeal, about 5 minutes.

Whisking constantly, add broth. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently, until mixture thickens, about 8 minutes. Reduced to a simmer and cook 10 minutes. It's about to smell like chicken soup in here. Stir in the chicken, peas and thyme and season with s & p. Divide the mixture among 4 12-ounce baking dishes (I only had 10 oz pyrex's, but they worked). Refrigerate until room temperature, about 20 minutes.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. On a lightly floured work surface, roll pastry to 1/8 inch thickness (I really had no idea how to figure that out, so just roll it out a little bit). Cut into 4 equal squares, 1 inch larger than the dishes; with the tip of a sharp knife, cut vents into pastry. In a small bowl, whisk the egg yolk with 1 t. water. Top the pot pies with the pastry and brush with egg wash. Refrigerate (AGAIN???) 15 minutes. I think I'm starting to remember why dinner was so late that night. Bake until pastry is deep golden and juices are bubbling, about 35 minutes.
Enjoy! You WILL burn your tongue, because, by the time you finish, you're so starving and you're determind to eat before midnight! They're also good the next day for lunch. Martha was kind enough to publish (some of) the nutrition stats for these bad boys, and I'll do the same: 478 cal, 20 g fat (10 sat), 45 g protein, 27 g carb, 3.4 g fiber.
Take that, Marie Callender.
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