Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Comfort Food


So we just had the third largest snow in the history of our town.  It pretty much shut down everything, and the mayor even declared it a state of emergency.  While I know that a lot of places up North are used to way more snow, our little West Texas town isn't really equipped to deal with it.

So, as we're stuck at home and cold and bored, the only thing to do here is to cook some comfort food.  We all have our favorites.  It's usually something old fashioned, something handed down, something warm and hearty.  I happened to have some puff pastry on hand, so I decided to make this open-faced Puff Pastry Pot Pie.  I made the stock homemade, and it all came together really easy.  It may seem like a lot of work, but it really wasn't.  The family loved this and nearly ate it all!  Comfort at its best!

PUFF PASTRY POT PIE
FOR THE STOCK:
1 lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs, rough chopped
1 carrot, rough chopped
1 stalk celery, rough chopped
1 small onion, rough chopped
2 bay leaves
6 C chicken stock
Salt & pepper, to taste
4 cloves garlic, rough chopped

FOR THE POT PIE:
2 sheets puff pastry, thawed
1/4 C flour
1/2 C chopped carrots
1 C diced potato
1/2 C frozen peas
1 stalk celery, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
1/4 C butter
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
Salt & pepper, to taste

For the stock, put all of the stock ingredients in a large pot or dutch oven.  Bring it to a boil.  Turn down the heat slightly. Continue boiling until the chicken is done.  Remove the chicken from the stock.  Strain the stock and reserve the liquid.  You will need 4 C stock.  If you don't have enough reserved stock, add enough water to make 4 C.  Shred the chicken and set it aside.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Roll the puff pastry out a bit.  Cover half of a 9 x 13 pan with one sheet of puff pastry, overlapping the edges of the pan.  Cover the other half of the pan with the other sheet of puff pastry, overlapping the edges of the pan.

In the same large pot or dutch oven, melt in the butter and drizzle in some olive oil.  Cook the celery, onion, potatoes, carrots and garlic until they are tender.  Sprinkle the flour over the veggies and stir.  Stir in the stock, salt and pepper to taste, and the poultry seasoning.  Bring it to a boil.  Continue cooking 5-7 minutes or until the sauce is thick.  Stir in the chicken and peas.  

Pour the mixture into the 9 x 13 pan.  Fold the edges of the puff pastry over the sides, partially covering the filling.  Brush the pastry with some melted butter.  Cook the pot pie in the oven for 35-45 minutes or until the puff pastry is browned and cooked through.

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