The American casserole is back on center stage "with a healthy helping of retro-chic and gourmet flair," thanks to The Casserole Queens Cookbook by Crystal Cook and Sandy Pollock! Featured in our September Cooking column, the cookbook by two Austin gals shares recipes for "one-dish wonders" for weeknight cooking.

World’s Greatest Chicken Pot Pie


Makes 8 servings


  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 1 (3-pound) roasted chicken, boned and shredded (see
    page 204)

  • 1/4 cup chopped red bell pepper

  • 2 medium shallots, thinly sliced

  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

  • 2 teaspoons salt

  • 1 teaspoon dried tarragon, crushed

  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 2 cups whole milk

  • 1 cup heavy cream

  • 1/3 cup dry white wine

  • 1 1/2 cups fresh peas, blanched (see page 31)

  • 11/2 cups carrots, diced and blanched (see page 31)

  • 2 russet potatoes, diced and blanched (see page 31)

  • 1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed

  • Egg wash (lightly whisk together 1 whole egg and 1 teaspoon water)


1. Preheat the oven to 425°F.

2. In a large skillet set over medium-high heat, melt the butter. Add the chicken, bell pepper, and shallots, and cook, stirring constantly, for 5 minutes. Stir in the flour, salt, tarragon, and black pepper. Add the milk and cream, and cook, stirring frequently, until the mixture is thick and bubbly, about 10 minutes. Add the wine, peas, carrots, and potatoes and stir until heated thoroughly, about 5 minutes.

3. Transfer the hot chicken mixture to a 9 x 13-inch casserole dish. Place the puff pastry over the top of the casserole dish. Brush the edges of the puff pastry with the egg wash and press against the side of the casserole dish, then cut slits in the pastry to allow steam to escape. Brush the top of the puff pastry with egg wash—this will help the puff pastry brown evenly. Bake for about 35 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Serve immediately.

Variations

Here are two other great ways to make our chicken pot pie:

Make individual pot pies! Portion out the filling into 6-ounce ramekins. Top each ramekin with some puff pastry and freeze. Cook at 425°F for 20 minutes or until puff pastry is golden brown. So cute!

Use store-bought pie dough and make empanadas! Using a 3-inch circle pastry cutter, cut 12 circles out of the dough. Place a large spoonful of filling on one half of each circle. Brush the edge of the pastry with egg wash, then fold in half to make a half-moon shape. Press the edges together firmly and crimp with a fork. Put the empanada on a baking sheet and bake at 350°F for about 30 minutes or until golden brown.

Excerpted from The Casserole Queens Cookbook by Crystal Cook and Sandy Pollock © 2011. Excerpted by permission of Ten Speed. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher. Read our review of this book.

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