Saturday, January 24, 2009

Disaster Pot Pie

I decided to clean out my refrigerator yesterday, and there was the remains on the beer can chicken, and a package of pie crusts...I thought I would throw together a quick chicken pot pie.

This is what I learned, never cook when you are tired, pay attention when you are cooking, wear your glasses, especially if you are a MAB (middle-aged broad) and never leave the kitchen for a minute.

Everything started out well, until I decided to take someone else's advice (I read somewhere on the internet that you should brush the pie crust bottom with egg white and bake for 2-3 minutes before putting a filling in it (of course, they neglected to say put pie weights in it first, and I was tired from this weeks pierogie party (more on that coming) and not paying attention. I put it in the oven, and I don't even know what made me check it, almost immediately and there it was , shrinking away!!!!! I immediately pulled it out of the oven and tried to push it back up the sides of the pie plate. I knew it was still usable, but I thought if I had another crust in the freezer, I would use that instead.

The sauce was finished and I had taken out the bowl I was going to use to combine everything and put it in the sink. I ran down to the freezer to find another pie crust, but alas, there was none. Ran back up to the kitchen and said, "The heck with it, (that's not exactly what I said) and decided to go with it. I start to pour the sauce mixture into the white mixing bowl and something sounds wrong...I mean really wrong!!!

Apparently, in my two minute absence, my housekeeper must have come into the kitchen and used the sink for something, and the bowl had water in it. Without my glasses on, and because I wasn't paying attention (I had just put the damn bowl there in the first place, lol) I just poured the sauce in. So, now, I was down about 1 1/2 cups of sauce, but the show must go on. I finished the filling, poured it in the shell and baked it.

You know what, it looked pretty good, and tasted pretty good too, the moral is, you never know. Go with the flow, I just had a piece of it for lunch again today and it was delicious, a little drier than I would have liked, but what are you going to do???

The reason I say have an extra box of pie crusts on hand, is that I think if I had all the liquid that was supposed to be in the recipe, (I used a deep 10 inch pie-plate) you could probably, easily get two (9-inch) pot pies out of the filling.

Chicken Pot PieElise Feiner

3-4 cups cooked chicken cubed
½ bag (16 ounce) baby carrots
1 small can (8 ounce) green peas, drained
3 stalks celery, sliced
1 stick butter
1 medium onion, chopped
3-4 small potatoes, peeled and cubed
2/3 cup Wondra flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon celery salt
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1 teaspoon McCormicks Season All Seasoned Salt
1 (32 ounce) box or can College Inn chicken broth
1 1/3 cups milk
2 (9 inch) unbaked pie crusts (have 2 extra in reserve)
1 egg, separated

Preheat oven to 400° F. In a saucepan, combine carrots, celery, and potatoes. Add water to cover and boil for 15 minutes. Remove from heat, drain and set aside. Place the butter in a saucepan over medium heat, cook onions until soft and translucent. Stir in flour, salt, pepper, celery salt, garlic salt, and seasoned salt. Slowly stir in chicken broth and milk. Simmer over medium-low heat until thick. Remove from heat and set aside. If the sauce doesn’t seem thick enough, take an additional tablespoon of Wondra and thin it in a little cold water, so it is watery (I use a little kitchen cup to do this) and rapidly whisk it in to the sauce. Put the sauce in a large bowl. Add the vegetables, and the chicken, mix well. Add in the peas, and stir gently to combine. Brush the bottom pie crust with the beaten egg white. Place the mixture in bottom pie crust. Cover with top crust, seal and crimp the edges. Make several small slits in the top to allow steam to escape. Brush with the egg yolk that has been beaten with a little water. Bake in the preheated oven for 40 to 55 minutes (check after 20 minutes, if getting too brown, cover with a piece of aluminum foil) or until pastry is golden brown and filling is bubbly. Cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Here is what you will need for this recipe:

As usual, let's get all the prep work done ahead, so we can just assemble esily when the time comes. Remember, as you use something, if yo won't need it again, put it away, makes clean-up nice and easy!

Spray your pie pan with PAM

Separate the egg white

and egg yolk (use a separator, use an eggshell,
use your fingers, whatever is easiest for you)

Beat the egg white

until frothy

Beat the egg yolk
Add about 1/2 an egg shell full
of water to the yolk

and beat again

Cube your chicken (you can also buy a
cooked chicken in the
grocery to use to make the pot pie)
if you haven't done that already, if I
am not being lazy, I sometimes do it before
I put away the leftovers so I can make
chicken salad

Peel the potatoes

Cut in half

turn 90 degrees and cut in half again

cut into cubes

cut off the tops of the celery

and bottoms

wash the celery

cut into thin slices (don't dice it small)

Put the carrots in a dish

Cut in half or thirds
by the way, if you only have
large carrots, that's fine too,
peel them, quarter them and then slice them

Peel the onion,

cut in half

Cut in thin slices

Turn 90 degrees and slice again

Cut into a small dice,

set aside

Place the carrots in a pot
add the celery

and the potatoes

Fill the pot with water

to cover the vegetables

Cover and bring to a boil )
Obviously I removed the cover to show you :)

boil for 15 minutes (don't forget to
set your timer once it comes to a boil)
When the timer goes off, strain and set aside

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Measure out your Wondra Flour, (I love Wondra
to thicken and make sauces, it's so fine)
set aside

Place the butter in a large skillet

Melt the butter
add the onions

saute until translucent
add the salt

seasoned salt

garlic salt


celery salt

stir well

add the flour

stir quickly to blend into
onion mixture

add the broth to the onion/flour mix

whisk quickly to incorporate the flour mixture or you will get lumps

add the milk

whisk well again

Bring to a boil to thicken, and turn off the heat

If you think it needs to be a little
thicken add a little Wondra (about a tablespoon, mixed
in cold water (I use a kitchen cup)

Whisk in quickly, the heat will thicken it, but continue to whisk
so you don't get lumps

Taste the sauce and reseason with salt
and/or pepper
if desired

Place one of the pie crusts into the pie place

Brush with the egg white
We are not, I repeat, not going to bake the crust
when you make it

Pour the sauce into a mixing bowl
(note the water in the bottom of the bowl,
am I dumb or what!!
I will wear my glasses,
I will wear my glasses 100 x's)

Do not pour your sauce into the water, lol

Add in the chicken

and the vegetables

Blend well

Open the peas

Drain the liquid

Add the peas (I used half a can because
I didn't have a small can)
No need to cook or heat them, they will
cook in the oven as the pie bakes

Blend gently

Place mixture into the pie
shell that you didn't ruin :)

Put the top crust on

Now, if I hadn't ruined the bottom crust
I would have crimped the crust
so I will show you from another pie I did
how it should look

(just pinch between your finger
you can look at the Cuban Pie Recipe
to see it more clearly)

Make some slits (with a small, sharp, knife) in the crust

Brush on the egg yolk

Place some tin foil on the shelf
below because pot pies are notorious
for overflowing (easy clean-up :)

Bake in 400 degree oven for 40-55 minutes
(Check after 20 minutes and cover with
foil if getting too brown)
until golden brown and filling is boiling

Let it sit about 10-15 minutes before cutting really was good, if it had
had all the sauce, it would have been fabulous!!!

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