Whenever I ask my younger daughter what I should make for dinner, her reply almost always is chicken pot pie. So, when I had to make this twice in two weeks, she was thrilled. The sauce (more like gravy, really) in the filling is something you can never get enough of.
The reason I had to make this chicken pot pie twice was because the first time I made it, right as I was pulling the pan from the oven, the sun decided to disappear behind the clouds and stay there all afternoon. I still tried to take pictures but the lighting was terribly flat and no amount of post processing was making it better. Much to my daughter’s chagrin, my second attempt at taking photos this week was more successful. Good photos mean I will not have to make this recipe again a third time next week.
I have tried several different recipes for chicken pot pie but I always come back to this one from Ina Garten (aka the Barefoot Contessa). Did I mention how incredibly delicious the filling is? It is so good you will not even mind all the dirty dishes this recipe produces because you will be too busy licking the sauce off the spatula. I adjusted the original recipe to fit into a 10-inch skillet in an attempt to reduce the number of dishes to wash. Also, I use rotisserie chicken to cut down on the prep time. All this means I can make chicken pot pie more often, though it will never be often enough for my daughter.
For the stew
- 3 1/2 cups chicken stock
- 1 chicken bouillon cube
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
- 1 cup chopped yellow onions
- 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1 tablespoon heavy cream
- 3–4 cups shredded rotisserie chicken
- 1 1/2 cups diced carrots, blanched for 2 minutes
- 1 1/2 cups frozen peas
For the biscuits
- 1 cup flour
- 1/2 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4 inch cubes
- 3 tablespoons milk
- 3 tablespoons cream
- 1 egg mixed with 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash, optional
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
For the stew
- In a small saucepan, heat the chicken stock and dissolve the bouillon cube in the stock.
- In a 10 1/4-inch cast iron skillet, heat the olive oil and butter until butter is mostly melted. Add the onions and sauté over medium-low heat for 10 to 15 minutes, until the onions are soft and lightly browned. Don’t rush this step – the brown bits add flavor to the stew.
- Whisk in the flour and cook over low heat, whisking constantly for 2 minutes. Add the hot chicken stock to the sauce. Simmer over low heat for 1 more minute, whisking, until thick. Stir in the salt, pepper, and heavy cream. Add the shredded chicken, carrots, and peas. Stir to combine. Adjust seasonings to taste. Place the skillet on a sheet pan lined with parchment or wax paper. Bake for 15 minutes.
For the biscuits
- While the filling bakes, make the biscuits. Combine the flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.
- Add the butter and mix on low speed until the butter is the size of peas.
- Add the milk and cream and combine on low speed until the dough begins to form a ball.
- Dump the dough onto a floured board. Using your hands or a rolling pin, flatten the dough to 3/8-inch thick. Cut out 6 circles with a 2 1/2-inch round cutter gathering the scraps and re-rolling as necessary.
- Remove the stew from the oven and arrange the biscuits on top of the filling. Brush them with egg wash, if desired, and return the pan to the oven. Bake for another 20 to 30 minutes, until the biscuits are brown and the stew is bubbly.
You can replace the biscuits with a sheet of puff pastry (such as from Pepperidge Farm). Thaw the puff pastry in the refrigerator overnight. When ready to bake the pot pie, unfold the sheet of puff pastry and gently place the puff pastry on top of the filling, trimming the dough as needed. Brush the top with egg wash and cut several slits into the dough to allow steam to escape. Bake until the top is golden brown and the filling is bubbly.
If you do not have a cast iron skillet or would like a prettier presentation, transfer the cooked filling to an 11×7 inch (2 quart) rectangular baking dish before baking.
Recipe adapted from the Barefoot Contessa Family Style cookbook.