Sometimes I get in trouble when I try to come up with new recipes. Things sound so good, until you end up with some rather strange looking pink rice (tasty, but still needs some work, and a little less...color). It is for precisely that reason that I try to have a good balance between experimental recipes (of which there are so many) and the tried and true.
I have been making this pot pie since we have been married, in the days when I learned not to experiment on guests (okay, I still do this occasionally) and when I learned that the true test was the hum test. Later on, I was the youth group "cook," providing meals to the kids in between snowy trips down the North Carolina mountains. There, I made larger batches of this pie and covered them with biscuits instead of crust. My friend Laura, a gracious co-chaperone on that trip, now only makes this pot pie recipe with a biscuit crust.
No matter which way you top it, this pot pie is a classic keeper.
Chicken Pot Pie
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup peeled carrots, sliced (about 2 medium carrots)
1 cup frozen green peas
2 cups new potatoes, cubed
1/2 cup celery, diced (about 2 stalks)
1/2 medium sweet onion, diced
5 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon herbes de provence
1/2 cup milk
2 tablespoons port wine, or sherry
1 pie crust, or 8 raw buttermilk biscuits
In a large saucepan, combine the chicken, broth, carrots, peas and potatoes. Bring to a boil over medium high heat, then reduce the heat to medium low, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove the chicken to a cutting board to cool. Using a slotted spoon. transfer the vegetables to a deep dish pie pan. Reserve the chicken broth in a measuring cup or small bowl. Cut the chicken into 1/2 inch cubes and transfer it to the pie pan.
Using the same saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Saute the onions and celery for five minutes. Stir in the flour, salt, pepper, herbes de provence; cook for one minute. Add the milk and reserved stock and cook for 3-4 minutes, until thick. Pour the sauce over the chicken mixture in the pie pan, spreading to reach the edges.
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
Top the pie with the pie crust, cutting away excess dough. Make five slits around the top to allow steam to escape. Alternatively, arrange the biscuits over the top of the pie. Place a piece of foil under the pie to catch any drips. Bake for 35 minutes, then cool for 10 minutes before serving.