Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Chicken & Mushroom Pot Pie

When the seasons change from summer to fall, the temperature drops, and the air outside feels crisp and pure, something within me wakes up and cannot wait to get in the kitchen.  I love to make comforting, hearty, delicious soups and stews and pastas and breads and roasted vegetables, put on cozy socks, throw open the patio door to let the cool air rush in, and fill our bellies.  Last fall, I kicked off the season with beef chili and sour cream & cheddar biscuits.

This year, I got things started with a chicken & mushroom pot pie inspired by my friend and yours, Martha Stewart.  A warm, hearty, welcome way to usher in my favorite season. 

I deviated from her recipe only slightly.  I used only chicken breasts rather than adding thighs since I'm not a dark meat fan.  I substituted the heavy cream with half & half and I added 1/4 cup of chopped parsley to the finished product just before ladling it into the baking dish.  I used a large baking dish rather than ramekins.  Lastly, rather than making a pâte brisée (a French pastry dough) as Martha suggests in her wisdom for the topping, I just rolled out some frozen puff pastry and called it a day.  I can't find a link on her website for this exact recipe, but it's in this month's issue of Martha Stewart Living (page 200 to be exact).  The recipe with my changes follows:

2 slices bacon, chopped
1 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion
6 ounces cremini (baby bella) mushrooms, quartered
3 medium carrots, sliced
1 celery stalk, sliced
Salt & Pepper
1/4 cup plus 1 1/2 tsp all-purpose flour
3 cups chicken stock
2 lbs chicken breast, cut into 1 inch cubes
3 Tbs half & half
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

For the topping:
1 package frozen puff pastry, thawed
1 large egg, lightly beaten for egg wash

To make the filling:
Cook bacon in a large saucepan over medium low heat until crisp.  Remove bacon with a slotted spoon and set aside.  Raise heat to medium and add oil.  Add onion and cook until translucent, about 8 minutes.  Add mushrooms, carrots, and celery and cook until softened, about 10 minutes.  Season with salt & pepper.  Stir in flour.

Add stock, and bring to a simmer.  Cook until thickened, about 5 minutes.  Add chicken and half & half.  Simmer until chicken is just cooked through, about 5 minutes.  Stir in parsley.  Return bacon to the saucepan.  Set aside to cool slightly.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Flour your board a bit and roll out the puff pastry to 1/4-inch thickness.  Use a knife or pizza cutter to cut your puff pastry so it will fit your pan. 

Ladle your filling into your baking dish.  Cover with puff pastry.  I was using an oval baking dish so I cut the puff pastry into long wide strips and just layered them until the surface was covered.  Brush the puff pastry with egg wash. 

Bake until topping is golden and filling is bubbling, about 20 minutes. 

egg washes are very serious


chickster said...

this looks reeally good! and I plan on using a roll of frozen pâte brisée from our grocery store. love all your recipes =)

Kelsey said...

Looks gooooood!