We had chicken pot pie for dinner last night, well, my version of it, which is perfectly within the rules of chicken pot pie. I make it without a pastry crust. I’m not particularly fond of crusts, and Craig picks them off of things, so I use biscuits instead. And I don’t like making them in pie plates. That’s mostly because I usually make too much filling and then it gets all over the oven. Knowing that I wouldn’t have much time to get the meal together after work (it had to spend a considerable amount of time in the oven), in a moment of weakness, I purchased canned biscuit dough. This led me to believe I may be turning into Sandra Lee, which makes me nervous. Luckily, I have not yet begun dressing up to match my kitchen, and creating “tablescapes.”
I started by sautéing 2 HUGE chicken breasts. Ideally you’d just roast a chicken(or buy a rotisserie chicken) and tear it apart, then chop up all the meat, but 1.5 lbs of breast meat only cost me $4.50 and it only took a little while to cook. After pulling those guys out to rest, I threw in 3 chopped carrots, 1 chopped white onion, 3 sticks of chopped celery, and about 8 button mushrooms that had been cut into 8ths. Those got sautéed until they were tender, then removed and mixed in with the cooled and then chopped chicken in a 9×13″ baking dish.
For my “cream” sauce, I melted 4 tablespoons of butter in my awesome All-Clad SS pan, and added about an equal amount of flour to it, whisking regularly until the mixture began turning a light golden brown. Once I reached that stage, I dumped in about 1/2 a cup of dry sherry, and about a cup of chicken stock, and whisked the hell out of it. Once I got most of the lumps out and it had started thickening, I put in about 3 cups of regular old 1% milk and whisked it in again. I also added salt and pepper to taste, some garlic powder (a shallot would be a great alternative), thyme leaves, and would have added poultry seasoning if I had been able to find it. Instead I used dry ground mustard powder. It worked fine. After this had cooked sufficiently, I poured it on top of the vegetables and mixed it in.
The only problem with me getting stuff in the oven as fast as possible (and drinking Makers Mark with water without having eaten anything for about 10 hours) is that the kitchen gets destroyed. It wouldn’t have been so bad, but I was unable to clean up after myself at all because I was totally uninterested in unloading the dishwasher. Everything ended up on the counter and in the sink and slowly took over the kitchen. I was a little afraid to get out of bed this morning as a result.