Saturday, September 29, 2012

Chicken Pot Pie from Scratch

Adapted from The Pioneer Woman

Start early in day
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups vegetable shortening
1 egg
3 tbsps. cold water
1 tbsp. distilled white vinegar

 Combine the flour and shortening with a pastry cutter for 3-4 minutes.

Add the egg, cold water and vinegar.

 Stir until just combined.  Divide dough into two (for thinner crust divide into three).

Place each piece of dough inside a gallon baggie.  Flatten with a rolling pin.  Repeat with second piece of dough.

Place in freezer for use at a later date or in refrigerator to use a couple hours later.

3 celery stalks (I used celery seasoning instead)
1 small pkg. fresh mushrooms (I used these instead of celery)
3 medium carrots, peeled and diced
1 large yellow onion, diced
1/2 stick butter
1/2 cup fresh peas
2 cups cooked chicken (see instructions below)
1/4 cup all purpose flour
2 cups low sodium chicken broth
1 chicken bouillon cube
1/4 cup white wine
1 cup heavy cream
1 tsp. ground thyme
1 tsp. kosher salt or more to taste
Black pepper to taste
Two pie crust shells

Take two chicken breasts and rub liberally with kosher salt.  Sprinkle on some pepper.  Over medium heat, heat up some olive oil.  Brown the chicken on both sides for about 10 minutes.  Remove from skillet and set aside.

When the chicken cools down.  Cut into 1" pieces.  Try not to be tempted to munch away at these. 

Now this is real, savory chicken (a gazillion times better than those McNuggets from McD's).  Set the chicken aside.

In a heavy dutch oven, heat the butter and add the carrots and onions

 Add the peas and mushrooms (or celery).  Saute until vegetables start to turn translucent.

Add the chicken and stir to combine.

Sprinkle in the flour and bouillon, stir to combine and cook for a few minutes. 

Add the broth, wine and cream, stir gently.  Cook over low heat for about 4 minutes.  Season with the thyme, salt and pepper.  Be sure it's adequately salted! 

 While the chicken is simmering, flour a clean surface and roll out the dough.  Preheat oven to 400F degrees.

Transfer carefully and gently to a 2 qt. casserole dish, press the pastry sides making sure there are no bubbles.  Allow the edges to overlap. As PW said, this doesn't have to look pretty, we're going for the rustic look.  Roll out the second pastry dough, set aside.

Fill the pie crust with the chicken mixture.

Carefully and gently place the second pie crust over the casserole dish, pinch the edges together.

Poke several holes into the pie crust.  Place in oven and bake for 45 minutes.

Is this rustic looking enough?  I should say so

Let set for about 15 minutes.  Time enough to set the table and gather the hungry natives.

Check out that thick crust.  When I was a little girl, the crust was my favorite part and I was always sad when it was gone.  I made the top pie crust thick. . . . on purpose :)

This was so good.  Consider it comfort food.  My MIL kept saying it was yummy.  Indeed, this was very yummy, hubby thought so too as well as my daughter-in-law :)

I loved, loved, loved Chicken Pot Pies when I was younger.  Because my mother wasn't that great of a cook (God rest her soul), she saw how much we enjoyed pot pies and seems like we always had an endless supply in the freezer.  Of course my favorite part was the crust.  When I saw this recipe in the Pioneer Womans website and cookbook, I noticed that she didn't use two pie crusts but only one for the top.  I simply wouldn't have it.  A Chicken Pot Pie to me must have the two crusts.  This method did not disappoint!  The crust was flaky and oh so yummy along with the chicken and vegies.  Comfort food on a beautiful, chilly Autumn day.

Hope you're having a fantabulous weekend and remember to savor every moment.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

M&M Pumpkin Muffins

Adapted from - Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread

3 cups white sugar
1 15oz. can pumpkin puree
1 cup vegetable oil
2/3 cups water
4 eggs
3 1/2 cups flour
1 tbsp. ground cinnamon
1 tbsp. ground nutmeg
2 tsps. baking soda
1 1/2 tsps. salt
1 cup miniature chocolate chips OR M&M Chocolate candies - Fall Theme
1/2 chopped walnuts (optional)
Cream Cheese frosting
Baking cups (optional)

Preheat oven to 350F degrees
Prepare a regular size muffin pan with butter, cooking spray or baking cups

In a mixing bowl, add sugar

add pumpkin puree

add oil

add water

add the eggs.

Beat until smooth.

Add the flour a little at a time as you mix.  Scrape down the sides several times.

Add the ground cinnamon

add the ground nutmeg (I grated this myself and it smells so wonderful)

add the salt and baking soda.  Blend well.

Fold in the M&M's

Pour into prepared muffin tin (I opted not to used baking cups).

Bake for 30 minutes or until toothpick poked in the middle of a muffin comes out clean.  Set a aside to cool then remove from muffin tin and place to cooling rack until completely cooled.

To frost or not to frost?  We chose to do both.

Either way, they both contain the chocolatey loveliness of these colorful Autumn themed M&M's.

Pumpkin and Chocolate = a perfect combination.  You just can't go wrong!

Hope you're having a blessed weekend and remember to savor every moment :)

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...