Individual Chicken Pot Pies
Recipe by Damon Lee Fowler, featuring
Salt Table’s Savannah Spanish Moss Blend
Pot pie is at its best when made with a chicken that has simmered in broth that’s in turn used to make the binding gravy, but a quick and perfectly satisfactory version can be made with leftover roasted poultry or a market-cooked rotisserie chicken, so it’s also a great way to use up leftover Thanksgiving Turkey. The Salt Table’s Spanish Moss Blend is ideal for poultry dishes, and gives these savory pies a deep, complex flavor without the complication of grinding spices and chopping several different herbs.
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 medium yellow onion, trimmed, split lengthwise, and peeled, and diced small
- 2 large carrots, peeled and diced
- 2 large ribs celery, trimmed, strung, and diced
- 1 tablespoon Salt Table Spanish Moss Blend, or to taste
- 1 tablespoon chopped flat-leaf parsley
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 3½ cups chicken broth, preferably from Poached Chicken (recipe follows)
- 3 cups cooked diced chicken, preferably Poached Chicken (recipe follows)
- 1¼ cups frozen peas
- 1 recipe Basic Pastry (recipe follows), or enough pre-made pastry for 2 9-inch pie shells
- 1 large egg white, beaten with 1 tablespoon of water (optional)
HOW TO MAKE IT:
- Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 400° F. Put the butter and onion in a heavy-bottomed deep skillet or wide, 3-4 quart pot over medium heat. Sauté, stirring often, until softened and translucent, about 3-4 minutes, then add the carrot and celery. Sauté, tossing, until softened and beginning to color, about 3-4 minutes more. Add a tablespoon of Spanish Moss Blend and sauté until fragrant, about half a minute.
- Sprinkle in the flour and stir until it’s bubbly and smooth. Slowly stir in 3 cups of broth, bring it to a simmer, and simmer until thick, stirring constantly. Add the diced chicken and peas, bring it back to a simmer, and simmer 3-5 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasoning, adding more Spanish Moss blend if needed to suit your taste, and transfer the filling to 4 individual potpie dishes or 10-ounce ramekins.
- Roll the dough out 1/8 inch thick on a lightly floured work surface. Cut it into rounds a little larger than the ramekins. Using a small decorative cutter, cut out the center of each and place the pastry over the filling. Use the same cutter to cut the excess pastry into decorative shapes, brush the bottoms with water, and arrange them around the edges. If you want a showy, glossy finish to the pastry, brush it with the diluted egg white.
- Bake in the center of the oven until the pastry is golden and the filling is bubbly at the center, about 30-35 minutes.
For pot pies, creamed chicken, and casseroles such as chicken spaghetti.
Makes 3-3½ cups diced cooked chicken, serving 4-5
- 2 medium yellow onions, trimmed, split lengthwise, and peeled, 1 thinly sliced and 1 diced small
- 3 large carrots, peeled, 1 thinly sliced and 2 diced small
- 3 large ribs celery, 1 thinly sliced, 2 trimmed, strung, and diced
- 1 3½ pound chicken, cut up as for frying
- About 4 cups chicken broth
- 1 large sprig plus 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
- 1 large sprig parsley
- 1 bay leaf
- 3-4 quarter-sized slices ginger
- Cover the bottom of a wide Dutch oven or deep braising pan with the onion, carrot, and celery. Lay the chicken over it skin up and sprinkle lightly with salt. Add enough broth to barely cover the chicken and put in the sprigs of sage and parsley, bay leaf, and ginger. Bring it to a simmer over medium high heat.
- Reduce the heat to a slow simmer, loosely cover, and cook until the chicken is tender, about 30-45 minutes. Remove the chicken, let it cool, then skin, bone, and cut the meat into bite-sized pieces. Strain and reserve the broth, discarding the solids.
Makes enough to make 2 9-inch pie shells, 1 double crust pie, or to cover 4 individual potpies
- 1¾ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons chilled lard or shortening, cut into bits
- 8 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter, cut into bits
- ¼ to ½ cup ice water
HOW TO MAKE IT:
- Sift or whisk together the flour and salt. Cut in the shortening and butter with a pastry blender until the flour resembles coarse meal with random lumps of fat no larger than small peas. Stir in ¼ cup of ice water and work it in. Continue adding water by spoonfuls as needed until the dough is holding together but not wet.
- Gather the pastry into two balls, press each one into a 1-inch thick flat disk, and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes or for up to 2 days. Let it come almost to room temperature before rolling it out.