Sunday, August 31, 2014

Friday Night Eats: Individual Chicken Pot Pies

Friday night was a different one for me.

First off, I fell asleep for about an hour at 4pm. Clearly I was in for an exciting night. I woke up and went to Whole Foods for some dinner goodies because I knew AR's flight wouldn't get in until 10pm.

I struggled when I walked in to Whole Foods, because 5pm is a sad time to grocery shop. It is a little pathetic to walk around with wine at 5 on a Friday, but too late for coffee. I caved and went with coffee (better to be caffeinated than be the sad person drinking as they shop for kale on Friday night).

I got all of the goodies to make a favorite meal of AR's: Chicken Pot Pie. I went with the simple version and grabbed a rotisserie chicken seasoned with salt & pepper.

Normally, I cook my own chicken breasts in the oven or poach them on the stove top, but this made it so much faster and the chicken was so flavorful.

I also cheated majorly and bought a pre-made pie crust. I have never done this before, but I thought it tasted AMAZING and it was so fast. Pre-made crust for the win. You could make your own crust, make a biscuit topping, buy a biscuit dough/mix, or even use pre-made pizza dough. All of these options work great.

I enjoyed my pot pie on the couch with a glass of red wine and the movie Bride Wars. A perfect Friday in, if I do say so myself!

Individual Chicken Pot Pies

4 T. butter OR oil (I use a mix of both)
1 med. yellow onion, chopped
3/4 c. carrots, pealed and chopped
3/4 c. celery, pealed and chopped
1/2 c. mushrooms, chopped
3-4 c. shredded chicken
1/2 t. dried sage
1/2 t. dried thyme
salt and pepper, to taste
3 1/2 c. chicken broth
1/3 c. flour
1/2 c. frozen peas
1/3 c. heavy cream or half & half

1 package of refrigerated pie crust dough (enough for 2 layers)
OR this recipe for pie crust.
extra flour for rolling
1 egg
1 T. water

Preheat over to 375*. Heat oil in large pot over medium heat. Add onion and sauté until slightly soften, for about 3 minutes. Add remaining vegetables and cook until slightly soft, about another 5-6 minutes. Add shredded chicken and seasonings.
Sprinkle flour on top of the mixture and stir in. Let the flour cook for 2 minutes, then pour in broth. Add peas. Continue to cook over medium heat until thickened, about 10 minutes. Add cream, stir to combine, and remove from heat.
Place individual ramekins** (five 2 c. or 8 1.5 c.) on a large baking sheet. Roll or fold out dough onto a floured surface. Using ramekins as a guide, cut dough into circles slightly larger than the top of each dish. Set dough aside.
Scoop filling into each ramekin, but do not fill completely. Once evenly divided, place dough circles on top of each dish and press down on edges. Beat egg with water to make an egg wash. Generously brush tops of each pie with egg wash.
Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until dark golden brown, rotating pan half way though. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.
To freeze: Let cool completely. Wrap each pie dish in plastic wrap, and then tightly with foil. Free for up to 1 moth.

**I like to make my pies in several sizes - some for AR and some for me. Last week, I did two larger pies, four medium pies, and two itty bitty pies to take in my lunch!

You could make this beautiful by crimping the edges, but I call it rustic and just leave the edges ragged.

Enjoy! These are an excellent way to stock your freezer with some pre-made dinners. Just pop them out in the morning and let them thaw in the refrigerator. By dinner time, they will be ready to heat in the oven!


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