Thursday, April 3, 2014

personal chicken pot pies

I woke up a few weekends ago  with a scratchy throat and feeling rundown. This entire year has felt like a rollercoaster of emotions and never ending to do lists, so I took the day to rest and give myself a break.

I also took it as an opportunity to make my first ever chicken pot pie and put it in personal ramekins which made them even more fun. Portion control + clearly defined "this is my crust not yours" = success in my book.

I bought the dough because dough generally isn't my thing and this was my first try anyway, so lets start with baby steps ya know? I stayed farrrr away from canned cream of chicken soup and made my own roux; far better option and I was able to control the sodium levels too.

personal chicken pot pies
1 package of frozen pie dough--most packs come with 2 and I used one and froze the second (or make your own and be an overachiever.) make sure it is room temperature
1 chicken breast, seasoned with rub listed below
3 carrots, peels and finely diced
2 celery stalks, finely diced
1 small onion, finely diced
1 potato (I didn't peel it but you can) diced and boiled in salted water until par-cooked (about 5 minutes past the water boiling.) drain but save the potato water on the side
3-4 stalks of broccolini, diced into bite sized pieces
1/4 head of cauliflower, diced into bite sized pieces
1 stick of butter (2 tablespoons melted)
2-3 tablespoons of flour
1-1.5 cups of milk, heavy cream or half and half
salt and pepper for seasoning

rub for chicken
1/4 tsp ancho chilli powder (you can also use regular chilli powder)
1/2 tsp seasoning salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
mix together and rub on both sides of the chicken and let it set for about 15-20 minutes

  • pre-heat oven to 350
  • pre-heat two pans on stovetop with a tablespoon of butter
  • once melted, put chicken breast in one pan; and cook until both sides are browned and place in the oven for an additional 6-8 minutes 
  • in the other pan, dump onions carrots and celery, season with salt and pepper. cook until veggies are soft, remove from heat.
  • on a foil lined pan, place broccolini and cauliflower with 2 tablespoons butter broken up into little pieces, salt and pepper; place in preheated oven for about 15 minutes, tossing once
  • melt 4 tablespoons of butter in a saucepan with about 3 tablespoons of butter; whisk together and add a few dashes of nutmeg, salt and pepper
  • whisk together until a thin paste has formed, remove from heat and whisk in about 1-1 and a half cups of cream, half and half or milk--whatever you have
  • place back on low heat and whisk together, adding the reserved potato water if its too thick--you want it to be a sauce like consistency. If too thin, raise the heat slightly and the sauce should naturally thicken. taste for seasonings and adjust accordingly.
  • flour your counter and rolling pin and roll out your pastry dough. cut it into 4 rounds that are about 1 inch wider than your ramekins; set aside.
  • once all veggies are cooked, dump them into the cream sauce, along with the potatoes; dice your chicken up into bite sized pieces and all to the mixture. taste for seasonings, stir together.
  • raise your oven temp to 375
  • line your ramekins with the bottom layer of dough, carefully pressing them in as not to tear the dough. a bit should hang over the sides
  • add your mixture, split evenly among both, and top with the remaining dough rounds. press the edges together and brush with melted butter
  • slice one or 2 cuts in the top of the dough to allow the heat to escape
  • place on cookie sheet (in case they bubble over) and into the oven until the tops are browned, about 15 minutes
tip: you can double the recipe for more people, and also sub in any veggies you like. I had most of these on hand which made it easier. You can also use frozen veggies.

Happy comfort food eating!

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