Amy’s Preferred Chicken Pot Pie

Amy’s Preferred Chicken Pot PieGo with Your Gut

I have been cooking long enough to know better when it comes to trying new recipes for old favorites. Yet, I keep falling into that same trap—the who knows? trap.

Case in point: Chicken Pot Pie. I love Chicken Pot Pie. It’s up there in my top 20. And I am pretty militant about what makes a good one. And, I have tried many different versions, and I know which one I prefer.

Yet, I continue to try new recipes, hoping for a different outcome, but knowing that I will probably be disappointed…

This phenomenon occurred again last night. I recently found a recipe for pot pie turnovers that I thought would be great to have in the freezer. (I am still on my freezer food kick.) So, I gave it a shot. Alas.

One of my kitchen rules is not to alter a recipe until I’ve made it once according to the instructions. I was tempted to bend the rules this time, because the recipe called for dried thyme. I love the taste of thyme.

Fresh thyme is one of my favorite herbs, and I use it often. Dried thyme, in my opinion, tastes like dirt. And it will overpower anything you make with that dirty flavor. So I compromised and only used one teaspoon of the two the recipe called for.

Bad move… Fresh thyme is the way to go. I also did not care for the addition of  Dijon mustard to the gravy.

The pot pies were definitely edible. But as a family, we agreed that this recipe was not a keeper. I’ll stick with my tried and true. And the moral to this story? Don’t mess with a good thing!

Amy’s Preferred Chicken Pot Pie
The good news is you can use this filling I developed, anyway you want—be it as a traditional pie, or as turnovers for something more portable.

4 T butter
1/2 cup onion, diced
1/2 cup carrot, diced
1/2 cup celery, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp fresh thyme, minced
3 cups cooked chicken (or turkey), shredded or diced
1 cup frozen peas, optional
1/4 cup flour
1/4 white wine
2 cups chicken broth, plus more if needed
Salt And Pepper, to taste

1 whole unbaked pie crust, store bought or from scratch, or puff pastry
1 whole egg
2 T water

Preheat the oven to 375 F.

Melt the butter in a large pot over medium-high heat, then add the onion, carrots, and celery. Sauté the vegetables until the carrots start to soften (about 8-10 minutes).

Add the garlic and the thyme and cook for 1 minute more.

Sprinkle the flour over the top, and stir it until it has coated the vegetables. Cook for 1 minute, then deglaze the pan with the wine.

Add in the chicken stock and stir it around to cook and thicken. Add in the chicken and peas (if using).

Once the sauce starts to thicken, add salt and pepper to taste.

Stir the mixture and let it bubble up and thicken (about 3 minutes). I like my pot pies more on the gravy side rather than broth-y, but if it seems overly thick, splash in a little more broth. Turn off the heat.

Pour the filling into a 2-quart baking dish, or individual serving-sized oven proof dishes. Roll out the pie crust on a floured surface and lay it over the top of the dish. Press the dough so that the edges stick to the outside of the pan.

Use a knife to cut little vents here and there in the surface of the dough.

Mix together the egg with 2 tablespoons water and brush it all over the surface of the crust. (You will have some egg wash left over.)

Finally, place the pie on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the crust is deep golden brown and the filling is bubbly.

To prevent the crust from getting too brown, you might want to cover it lightly with foil for the first 15 minutes of baking time.

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