Monday, October 14, 2013

Chicken Pot Pie with a Twist

I love dishes like chicken pot pie, because they are so comforting.  They use up whatever veg you have in the garden, or fridge.  The recipes are easily changed and manipulated to suit your own tastes and it is easily froze for future consumption on a cold fall evening.  As you can see in the picture  my twist on this classic recipe is in the crust, instead of one of the two usual suspects (dough crust or dumplings)  I use stove top stuffing.  Trust me this is delicious and sooo easy.  I don't need to mix batter to make this crust, I can just use left over stuffing from a chicken or turkey I have made or just whip up a box from the store.  If you make it from homemade stuffing it is that much better, plus you probably have left over chicken or turkey to use as well.  But I digress, and I had no left overs to use so on with the recipe.  First I gathered together all the veg that I wanted to use.  This included: Sweet potato, potatoes, turnip, carrots, parsnip, bell peppers, onion, and celery.

I chopped up all the root veg first as it takes longer to cook.  I put all this veg is a pot with some water and par-boiled it to give it a head start.  While that was cooking I sliced up the celery, bell peppers and onions and sautéed them.  Then GMF came in a said what about leeks, great idea, so he ran out to the garden and picked a couple small leeks to add.  I also added about 3 cloves of crushed garlic to the sautéing veg.  Note in the future I would do more leeks, celery and onions.  The ratio of root veg to others was a little to high this time.  Then I put everything together in a large pot and sprinkled with a couple tablespoons of flour and mixed in.  For the stock I used chicken stalk - about 2 cups by eye (just enough to almost cover the veg) and a couple shots of vermouth (this gives it a great flavour) it will reduce and thicken with the flour.  The main seasonings I used were salt, pepper and lots of sage.  Oh and just as I did when I was cooking I almost forgot the chicken.  I sliced up a couple chicken breasts and sautéed them with some oil and sage and added this to the mixture of vegetables.

When the mixture was all combined and the sauce thickened I added it to individual sized ramekins, but you can make this in one large casserole pot and serve family style as well.  Then I added the stove stop stuffing to the top and cooked in the oven on broil to crispen the stuffing.  
As you can see when it is cooked some of the juices will boil over the top.  Be careful when cracking into this it will be very warm on the inside, but soooo delicious.  Here's a not so great photo of what it looks like when someone has started munching.

I also had plenty to make three freezable individual dishes.  I used the tin pie plates for this because we had them on hand.  I put them in a ziplock bag in the freezer as well.  I need to get some pyrex individual pie plates for this in the future.


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