To me, there is nothing more comforting on a cold day then chicken pot pie. The creaminess of the sauce, aromas of the spices, and not let us forget the crust. I love pie crust, flaky, salty, and buttery. And if you let the crust get nice and dark brown, not burnt, it will take on a smoky flavor.
With the unseasonably cold winter in Texas I am yearning for some good old-fashioned comfort food, I thought chicken pot pie would soothe this yearning. Before I even start to make my pies, I am anticipating the way the smoky flavor of the crust, mixed in with the chicken, vegetables and the sauce will taste in my mouth. Oh, I need to get this going. And, yes, there will be a top and bottom crust. You can’t have chicken pot pie without a bottom crust. That would be just plain wrong.
However, since it has been cold and I have been yearning for comfort food I made the pot pies as small bites. You don’t eat as much and it doesn’t put you in a semi-comatose state from the heaviness of the meal.
I made the pot pies in my mini cast iron casserole pots. I created the pattern for the bottom and top crusts. It’s simple to do. Just trace the bottom and top of whatever you are making your pies in and put the pattern on a clean cardboard cake circle. I use the cake circles because of the strength and durability of the board. Plus you can wipe them clean before using so as not to ruin the board and contaminating your food. Then just follow the recipe for the crust.
Small Bite Chicken Pot Pie
By Dina Puleo
¼ cup Flour
1/2 cup of butter
2 cups of cooked chicken cut into tiny pieces
Salt and pepper seasoning
1 ¼ cup of chicken Stock
¾ cup of white wine
¼ cup milk
¼ cup heavy cream
1/2 potato, cooked and diced
¼ cup of onion, diced
1/3 cup celery, diced
½ cup carrots, diced
½ cup frozen peas
¼ teas. of thyme
¼ teas. poultry seasoning
½ teas salt
¼ black pepper
1 ½ cups flour
¾ teas. coarse sea salt
1 ½ teas. of sugar
¼ teas. oregano
¼ teas. Italian seasoning
6 tablespoons of cold butter, cut into tiny pieces
2 ½ tablespoons of vegetable shortening
4 tablespoons cold water
Make piecrust at the end of this recipe
Heat ¼ cup butter in pan over medium heat. Watch that you don’t burn the butter. Whisk in all the flour. Turn down heat medium low and keep whisking so flour does not burn. Whisk until slightly blonde in color, about 4 – 5 minutes. Set aside.
In a small pot heat chicken stock and white wine to a slow boil. Place celery, carrots and frozen peas in the liquid and blanch for 5-10 minutes until done. Take strainer spoon and scoop out vegetables and set aside with potato.
In a large pot on medium heat melt ¼ butter. Add onions and sauté for 5-7 minutes. Lower heat and add roux. Whisk for one minute and then add hot stock, whisking away for one – two minutes until it starts to thicken. Add milk, heavy cream, thyme, poultry seasoning, salt and pepper. Continue to whisk until it is thick. Stir in the chicken and vegetables. Keep warm. If it becomes too thick add more chicken broth.
For the pastry dough:
Mix together flour, salt, sugar, and oregano. Put into a food processor and pulse 3 times. Add the butter and shortening. Pulse the mixture until the butter is the size of peas. Add the water and pulse until the dough forms a ball. Take the ball of dough out and wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
Heat oven to 375.
Place the dough on a floured service* and roll out in a rectangle to a 1/8” thickness. Cut out small circles and place the circles on cookie sheet.
Bake for 12 minutes, flip the disks over, and bake for 10 more minutes. Cool on rack.
Place one piece of piecrust in small serving dish. Place a small mound of chicken filling on top of bottom pieces and then place another circle on top. If cooled off too much can rewarm in oven for a few minutes.
* Another option is to lightly oil the surface instead of using flour. The dough comes up just as easily.