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Thursday, August 11, 2011

Chicken Pot Pie with Roasted Vegetables and Puff Pastry | Back to School


 

I think chicken pot pie got a bad wrap after years of frozen versions made it to the table.  This version, made with roasted vegetables and chicken topped with flaky puff pastry* is not anything like the old TV dinner... it is actually a treat.  This recipe take just 30 minutes to prepare from start to finish AND it is relatively healthy.  I serve it with a really fresh and crunchy salad to complete the meal.
*I always keep puff pastry in the freezer.  I use it for making quick caramelized onion and goat cheese tarts, cinnamon pecan sticky buns, and easy appetizers... it was definitely my secret weapon as a caterer and party planner.

This is a great Back-to-School dinner because it can all be made in advance, then baked with the puff pastry when you're ready to serve it. 

Chicken Pot Pie with Roasted Vegetables and Puff Pastry

2 chicken breasts, split with bone and skin on
4 carrots, 1-inch dice
8 small red potatoes, 1-inch dice
2 tbs of olive oil
1 tsp of sea salt
1/2 tsp of pepper
1 sheet of puff pastry*
4 tbs of butter
4 tbs of flour
1/2 cup of chicken stock
1/2 cup of half-and-half
1 cup of frozen peas

Step 1 : Roast the Chicken & Vegetables

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees (F).  Start by placing the chicken breast in the center of a baking sheet.  Add the carrots on one side and the potatoes on the other.  Drizzle the vegetables and chicken with olive oil, salt and pepper.  Toss the carrots and potatoes to coat.  Roast them in the oven for 20 minutes.  The cooking time may vary depending on thickness of the chicken breast.

Step 2 : Make the Cream Sauce

In a saucepan, melt butter on medium-low heat stir in flour, whisking until smooth.  Let the flour and butter cook for about 1 minute.  Whisk in chicken stock and continue to whisk over low heat until smooth.

Add in the half-and-half.  Whisk until smooth.  Cook over medium-low heat for 5-10 minutes until thick and bubbly - whisk constantly, or at lease every minute to keep it from burning on the bottom.  When it is thick, turn off the heat.

Step 3 : Combine

When the vegetables and chicken have finished roasting, let them cool for 3-5 minutes.  Remove the skin and bones from the chicken and chop it up into 1-inch cubes.  Add the chicken, carrots and potatoes into the cream sauce.  Add the peas.  The warmth of the cream sauce and vegetables should thaw the peas.  Avoid over heating them, as they will get bland and starchy.  Pour the mixture into two oven proof bowls.  

Step 4 : Puff Pastry

Turn the broiler in your oven on low.  *Cut sheet of puff pastry into 4 pieces.  Reserve two of the pieces for later - you can put them back into the freezer.  Place the pastry on top of the two bowls filled with the chicken mixture.  Brush the top of the pastries with a little melted butter or olive oil and sprinkle them with salt & pepper.  Place them under the broiler for 2-3 minutes, or until they have puffed and are brown.

**If you are preparing this before hand, pour the chicken, vegetables and sauce in the bowls, wrap them in plastic wrap and refrigerate.  Bake them at 350 degrees for 15 minutes, then top with puff pastry, salt & pepper.  Place them under a high broiler for 2-3 minutes until the pastry is puffed and flaky. 


The chicken breasts (only 1 pictured here, I made enough for 2 instead of 4), carrots and potatoes go onto one baking sheet to roast in the oven.
Make the sauce by melting butter over medium low heat, then adding flour...
Then adding chicken stock and half-and-half... stirring to make a creamy sauce.  The sauce will thicken as it cooks over medium low heat.  Be careful not to burn! 
Puff Pastry is the perfect topper.  It is flaky, buttery and puffs up in just a couple of minutes under the broiler.  It is found in the freezer section - I buy extra and keep it in the freezer for last minute everything... cinnamon rolls for breakfast, goat cheese and caramelized onion appetizers, etc.

It is Back to School Season!  I've put together a Back to School Guide that will make the beginning of the school year more fun (and manageable!).  These make ahead dinners, easy breakfast recipes and simple desserts will get an A+ from your kids... and will pass the parent taste test, too!

2 comments:

  1. I find this a healthy treat for the family. We did this last summer and it was fulfilling. I recommend this chicken pie.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Anonymous7:30 PM

    I substituted puff pastry for biscuits, I was in a pinch! It was awesome!

    ReplyDelete

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