Few foods whisper—okay, yell—”comfort” as much as Chicken Pot Pie. And with all this icky winter weather, a little comfort is a good thing.
Speaking of a “good thing,” while folding clothes one day years ago, I was inspired by Martha’s recipe for Chicken Pot Pie that she featured on her perfect-for-clothes-folding show Martha Stewart Living (that show got me through many a load of laundry, man). I quickly printed out the recipe, and this Chicken Pot Pie soon made its way into our regular comfort food repertoire. It graces our table around this time every year, and I know once you try it, you’ll agree that it deserves a regular spot in your menu lineup.The main ingredients are standard potpie players: chicken, onion, potatoes, carrots and mushrooms …
And of course, peas. Yes, I used frozen. (Martha, don’t be hatin.) But the addition of cognac is what makes the flavor magic happen. Don’t worry, you don’t need much. You won’t get hooched up. Promise. Add in herbs, chicken stock and a few other basic ingredients, and the potpie comes together nicely. I usually use one large oven safe soup tureen or dutch oven topped with puff pastry. But sometimes it’s fun to use individual oven safe dishes for a special occasion.
Top the pot pie with puff pastry. Brush with a little egg yolk and bake. Beautiful results, for not much effort.
One of the things I like about this recipe is that the pie “filling” can be made ahead, then topped with the puff pastry, and baked to re-warm prior to serving. Also, over the years I’ve used both boneless chicken breast or a whole chicken for this recipe. And for this go around, I grabbed a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store, because I was running short on time.
This savory Chicken Pot Pie is fancy looking enough for your Valentine’s Day table, but simple enough for any weeknight meal. And with Valentine’s Day being on a school night this year, this Chicken Pot Pie would make for a snazzy weeknight meal for sure. Serve alongside a salad, and dinner is done.
- 6 tablespoons butter, salted or unsalted
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1½ pounds potatoes, peeled and cut into approx. 1-inch cubes (I used new potatoes)
- 1 pound (about 6 medium) carrots, cut into approx. 1-inch pieces
- 10-12 ounces mushrooms, sliced
- ½ cup cognac
- 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 1 cup milk
- 5 cups chicken, cooked (roasted or poached) (Again, I used a whole rotisserie chicken de-boned the last time I prepared this.)
- 1 cup fresh or frozen green peas
- 5 teaspoons dried parsley
- 2½ teaspoons dried thyme
- ½ teaspoon dried sage
- 3 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 sheet frozen puff pasty, thawed
- 1 egg yolk + 1 teaspoon water for egg wash
- extra salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 425-degrees F. (If making ahead skip this step.)
- In a stock pot or dutch oven, melt the butter over medium-high heat.
- Add onion, potatoes, carrots, mushrooms, and a few pinches of salt and pepper; cook, stirring occasionally, until tender; about 10-12 minutes.
- Add cognac, and combine.
- Stir in flour and cook for about 1 minute until combined well.
- Add chicken stock and milk. Combine well and bring to a simmer for about 2-minutes, stirring until mixture thickens.
- Add chicken, peas, parsley, thyme, sage, salt and pepper, and combine well.
- Transfer mixture to preferred serving vessel. Or if preparing ahead, let cool and refrigerate to re-heat later.
- When ready to bake, whisk together the egg yolk and 1 teaspoon of water.
- Cut thawed puff pasty 1-inch larger in diameter than the chosen serving dish/vessel, and cut out a ½-1-inch hole in center for venting.
- Center cut puff pastry over dish and crimp down around edge of dish to seal.
- Brush top of pastry with egg wash.
- Bake in 425-degrees F oven on baking sheet for 10 minutes, then cover lightly with aluminum foil and continue baking for another 20-25 minutes.