“Chicken” Pot Pie

Ingredients:
Filling:

  • 1/2 T extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ white or yellow onion, finely diced
  • 8 oz fresh mushrooms, cleaned and roughly chopped
  • 1 c vegetable broth, divided
  • 6 oz baby carrots, thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ tsp dried ground thyme
  • 1 1/3 c frozen cut green beans, thawed
  • 1 c frozen corn, thawed
  • 1 T light butter
  • 2 T all-purpose flour
  • 1 c 1% milk
  • ¼ c light sour cream
  • 16 oz seitan, roughly chopped

Topping:

  • 1 ready-made puff pastry sheet (~8-9 oz, usually sold frozen)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 T 1% milk

Instructions:

  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  • Remove the puff pastry sheet from the freezer, wrap it in a tea towel or clean kitchen towel, and set aside (so that it will be thawed when you are ready to use it).
  • Spray a 9” pie pan with non-stick spray; set aside.
  • In a very large sauce pan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat for a minute; then add the onion and mushrooms and cook until the mushrooms soften (about 3 minutes).
  • Add ½ c broth, carrots, Worcestershire, and thyme.  Raise the heat to high and bring to a boil; then reduce the heat to low, and simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes.
  • Raise the heat to medium, and add the thawed green beans and thawed corn; cook for another 2 minutes.
  • Transfer the vegetable mixture to a large bowl; set aside.
  • Return the same sauce pan to medium heat; melt the butter, then add the flour and cook for 1-2 minutes, or until the flour darkens slightly.  Add the milk, sour cream, and remaining vegetable broth, and cook on low until sauce thickens (about 1 minute), stirring constantly.  Once the sauce is thick, add the seitan, and cook another minute.
  • Add the seitan and white sauce to the vegetable bowl; stir until the vegetables are evenly coated with the sauce.
  • Pour the coated vegetables into the 9” pie pan.  Set aside.
  • Lightly flour a large, smooth, clean counter surface.  Gently unfold the puff pastry, and place on the floured counter.  Lightly run a rolling pin over the pastry a few times in alternating directions, until the puff pastry has stretched slightly.
  • Gently place the rolled puff pastry over the full pie pan; cut away the excess pastry with a knife.  (Run the knife around the outer edge of the pie pan, so that the puff pastry extends to the far edge of the pan.)  Crimp the edges of the puff pastry against the pie pan.
  • Working quickly, in a small bowl whisk together the egg and the tablespoon of milk until blended.  Lightly brush this egg wash over the top of the entire puff pastry (be careful not to tear the pastry).  Then take a sharp knife, and cut six 2” steam slits into the top of the pastry.
  • Put the pie pan on a large baking sheet (to catch any overflow that might occur), and bake for 35 minutes.  Remove when the pie is golden brown.
  • Let the pie stand for 5-10 minutes, then serve.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Makes 6 servings.

Nutritional information per serving, filling + puff pastry topping (approximates):
355 calories, 14 g fat, 32 g carbohydrate, 4 g fiber, 10 g sugar, 25 g protein.

Nutritional information per serving, filling only (approximates): 230 calories, 5.5 g fat, 22 g carbohydrate, 3.5 g fiber, 9.5 g sugar, 22 g protein.

My notes:

  • I have included a visual “walk through” of this recipe at the bottom of this post;
    scroll down if you would like to see it.

The ratings:
Mental Cost (ingredient availability): Low
Financial Cost (ingredient cost): Medium-Low
Emotional Cost (cooking skill level): Medium-High
Time Cost (recipe preparation): Medium-High
Life Cost (clean up time/effort): Medium
Worth It? (rate from 1-5): 4.63

The Bottom Line: Will I make this recipe again?

For the past week or so, I’ve had a hankerin’ for some chicken pot pie.  I don’t know why (it’s been years since I last ate chicken pot pie); but hey, it is what it is.  Last weekend during grocery shopping I looked for some ready-made pot pies; but alas, none of them were vegetarian – plus most of them were super un-healthy.  It looks like if I want some pot pie, I’m going to have to make it myself.

But honestly, attempting a version of chicken pot pie kind of made me nervous.  Getting a thick, creamy, and healthy white gravy sauce is no small feat; and the list of ingredients for this dish is longer than I would like; and the time involved to make this recipe is more than I usually care to spend in the kitchen.  But more than anything else, puff pastry kind of scares me.

I know, I know – a grown adult woman being intimidated by (even slightly fearful of) an inanimate object?  Alas, it’s true.  Puff pastry looks super-cool, but I’ve heard it’s fickle – and my track record with complex recipes isn’t fabulous.  Do I want to try it?

Yes, yes I do.  “The only way out is through”, many wise people say.  So I went online and looked over a variety of pot pie recipes, and synthesized some ideas from a few different resources.  Then I added my own twists and spins, and wrote it all up in the recipe posted at the top of this blog entry.  I secured the required supplies (I’m talkin’ to you, puff pastry); headed down to the kitchen; chopped and sautéed and rolled and brushed; and at the end of it all…

I made one pretty darn awesome pie.

The puff pastry baked up beautifully; it was perfectly brown, flaky, tender, light – everything I could have hoped for.  The base of the pie was robust and full of veggies, but still moist with a lovely white sauce.  The meal is filling, and savory, and healthy.  And I did it all myself.  I’m so proud!

The only thing I would change if I were to make this again would be to double the amount of seitan used (which I did adjust in the recipe posted here; so you don’t have to make that change – I already did it for you).  :)  Otherwise, I love it.  And so does my husband.

Success – yay!

Stef

Special Bonus: Photo walk-through

Below is the visual story of my journey, if you are interested in “living” the pot pie experience with me.  :)  Enjoy!

I start every recipe by assembling all of the ingredients. Few things are worse than getting halfway through the instructions, only to discover a key item is nowhere to be found in the house.

I cautiously opened the puff pastry...

... peered inside ...

... contemplated what to do with it ...

... and clearly made the wrong choice. Grr.
Puff pastry, why must you be so difficult?

Luckily the pastries are sold two-to-a-box.
I removed the unblemished pastry and wrapped it in a tea towel; I returned the broken puff to the freezer.
I guess I'll be making some turnovers in the future.

Because this recipe is slightly "trickier" than ones I usually make, I decided to go ahead and do mise en place. (Usually I skip mise en place, and just measure as I go along.)

The veggies cooked up nicely...

...as did the white sauce.

I'm halfway there. Yay!

Now, on to the puff pastry. (Rolling up sleeves.)

I got it open! Woo hoo!

A little light pressure...

...and I have a workable pastry.
Now, can I get it on the pie plate?

Success!

A little knife work to clean it up...

...and a little egg wash to make it shine.
A few slits for performance...

...and slide it on a baking sheet to protect the oven.
Hmm. It looks a little scary right now.
How will this turn out?

Freaking awesome -that's how!

(Glad I used a baking sheet.)

The true test...

...yum. Yay!

The end.  :)

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About Stef

A "serious" gal who is trying to remember to lighten up and smile.
This entry was posted in "chicken", casserole, picture step-by-step, postaweek2011, pot pie, puff pastry, seitan, vegetarian and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to “Chicken” Pot Pie

  1. Looks great Stef. I think, I too will be making a pie soon.
    You’ve inspired me:)

    Like

  2. carlaat says:

    Looks fabulous! Congratulations with the puff pastry! I recently discovered it and it is some fantastic stuff!

    Like

  3. Touch2Touch says:

    I confess: I am TERRIFIED of puff pastry. Have even passed up making a magnificent chocolate tart that my friend (who made it) swears is simple because, after all, you buy the puff pastry.
    Hah.
    But thanks to your visual — I won’t promise to try it. But I might conceivably THINK about someday trying it. Progress.
    Thank you!
    (That “chicken” pot pie looks scrumptious)

    Like

    • Stef says:

      Honestly, the puff isn’t too terrible to work with. I’d consider at least trying it.

      Another thing I’m terrified of is phyllo dough. I’ve always wanted to try baklava, but the whole phyllo dough issue has stopped me. Maybe later this year, though; after all, I’ve now done puff…. ;)

      Like

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