Tuesday, November 18

Chicken Pot Pies

Individual chicken and vegetable pies topped with a buttery, flakey crust

Chicken Pot Pie Smitten Kitchen Recipe

We do dinner with another couple nearly every Thursday night and alternate cooking at our prospective apartments, which are luckily just a few blocks away. Since I've been traveling so much during the week, we switched it up and invited them over for dinner this past Sunday instead. They've eaten my cooking so often that they know my style and what to expect from me, but throwing a weekend into the mix changed everything. I had a whole day to cook instead of a couple of rushed hours post-work, and I wanted to make something comforting and labor-intensive - the true epitome of a Sunday supper. I settled on this recipe for chicken pot pies, which is a Smitten Kitchen adaptation of a Barefoot Contessa recipe. The chicken simmers in a luscious gravy sauce alongside the usual carrots and peas, then is ladled into individual serving bowls and topped with a flakey homemade crust. It takes time and effort, but the result is one of the best pot pies I've ever eaten. If you're making these for company, you can make the filling and crust separately and then just assemble the pies before baking.

Related Recipes:
- Kale, Onion, & Potato Pot Pies
- Chicken & Mushrooms Pie
- White Chicken Chili

Chicken Pot Pies:
- 2 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
- 2 sticks (16 tbsp.) cold butter
- 1 tbsp. sugar
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1/2 c. cold water

- 2 1/2 lb. bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts
- 3 c. low-sodium chicken stock
- 1/4 c. sherry
- 1/4 c. whole milk
- 1 large onion, diced
- 2 leeks, white and light green part only, diced
- 1 c. carrots, diced
- 1 c. frozen peas
- 3 tbsp. olive oil
- 3 tbsp. room-temperature butter
- 4 1/2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp. fresh thyme leaves
- salt
- pepper

For Crust
  • Pulse all-purpose floursugar, and salt in a food processor.
  • Add in butter and pulse to the size of peas, then stir in cold water until it forms a ball.
  • Flatten into a disk and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
  • Roll out the dough to 1/4" thick and cut into circles slightly larger than the rim of your pot pie bowls.
For Pot Pies
  • Heat 2 tbsp. olive oil in a large dutch oven over high heat.
  • Season chicken breasts with salt and pepper and add to the pot.
  • Cook half the chicken for 4-5 minutes per side, or until nicely browned. Remove the first batch and repeat the process brown the rest of the chicken.
  • Add 1 more tbsp. olive oil and the onion and leeks, lower the heat to medium, and cook for 5-7 minutes, or until softened.
  • Add in the sherry and scrape the bottom of the pan, then pour in the chicken stock, milk, and thyme.
  • Add the chicken back into the pot, bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through.
  • Remove the chicken, let cool slightly, then shred the meat into bite-size pieces and discard the skin and bones.
  • Preheat the oven to 375F.
  • Meanwhile, mash together the butter and flour into a paste. Skim any fat off the top of the gravy, then stir in the butter mixture.
  • Simmer the gravy for 10 minutes, or until thickened. Add in the carrots and simmer for another 5 minutes, then add the chicken and peas and turn off the heat.
  • Ladle the filling into four-six oven-safe bowls (depending on size) and top each with a pastry lid.
  • Crimp down the edges of the lid and cut an "x" slit into the top of each to allow steam to escape.
  • Brush the top of the pastry with a little milk and sprinkle with salt.
  • Bake for 35 minutes, or until the pastry is golden brown.

Serves four-six

Individual Chicken Pot Pies