Just like home: bacon & chicken pot pie

Recipe and photography by Greg Kaladeen, ArtSci '12, Contributor

Fall is a perfect time to break out the pots and pans to cook something! Just touring the market floods you with inspiration; a colourful display of potatoes, apples, carrots and pears have me excited to heat up my kitchen. So do yourself a favour, toss out the Swanson dinner, and try something new and delicious!

With midterms over and most people having a bit of a lull before exams I thought I’d share a recipe that really tastes like home. It's something you won't have to stress over and could have fun making or sharing with a group of friends.

The thing to remember for this recipe is to taste throughout cooking; if it's good going in, it will be good coming out!

Serves 4-8 people, leftovers the next day are delicious.

Caloric Breakdown
Based on a six serving recipe, there will be roughly 420 Calories per serving.
Versus a Pepperidge Farm "Original Flaky Crust Roasted Chicken Pot Pie" which comes in at 1,020 calories for a roughly similar portion.
A single serving should be an adequate dinner for one person.

Ingredients

Filling:
3 Medium sized red-skin potatoes, peeled and cut into bite sized pieces
2 Chicken breasts, cooked (leftovers are fine, bone in if possible)
2 Carrots, peeled and cut into bite sized pieces
5-10 White pearl onions, rinsed
3 Teaspoons of sugar

Cooked Vegetables

Cooked Veggies

Cream Sauce:
1 Litre of low-sodium chicken stock (one good quality box if you can afford it)
1/2 Cup of hard apple cider
1 Cup heavy cream
3 Tablespoons of butter
3 Tablespoons of all purpose flour
A few slices of peameal bacon, sliced into bite sized pieces
A teaspoon each of rosemary, thyme and sage
Black Pepper

Crust:
1 Package of puff pastry (best quality you can find)-keep in freezer until a few hours before you begin making it
1 Egg
Flour for rolling

Directions

Prepare the Crust
1. Take out Puff Pastry to thaw for 3 hours at room temperature before you plan on baking your pie.
2. Once dough is soft enough to use, roll it out on a floured surface using an amount slightly larger than your pie dish and about 1/2 centimetres thick.



Prepare the Filling (If making with friends some could start on the cream sauce now)
3. About one and a half hours before you plan on baking gather all the filling ingredients.
4. Put the carrots, potatoes and onions in their own pot-individually, fill with water so that they are all fully submerged. Sprinkle a teaspoon of salt and sugar into each pot and bring them to a simmer over medium-high heat. Cook until just tender, about 8-10 minutes for the carrots and onions, and a bit longer for the potatoes. Once cooked to satisfaction, drain and place in the pie dish. Skin and slice onions in half before adding them in also.
5. Cut the chicken into bite sized pieces and mix in with vegetables (keep the bones in for the next step)- at this point make sure to taste each of the filling components and season them if necessary. Preheat oven to 375°F.


Prepare the Cream Sauce
6. Pour the chicken stock into a pot and bring to a boil on high heat; add rosemary, thyme and sage (chicken bones also if you have them).
7. In a medium sized pan combine the butter and flour on medium heat for 2-3 minutes then remove from heat.
8. Once the chicken stock has reduced by about half (20-30 minutes), strain it into the butter flour mixture, add the peameal bacon and cream. Simmer for 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper and pour into pie dish.

Uncooked Pie

Uncooked Pie

Finish it Off
9. Place pie shell onto your pie dish, make sure all the sides are well sealed by pinching and overlapping edges. Make a glaze with the egg yolk and a tablespoon of water; brush it over the entire shell of the pie. Use this as a kind of glue for the sides.
Poke a hole in the centre of the pie (so that it doesn't explode) and place in the oven's bottom rack for roughly 25-40 minutes; or until crust is browned. Make sure to check on the pie regularly! Once the crust is flaky, the inside will be cooked.

10. Enjoy!

Finished Pie

Finished Pie

Ask Greg: Have any suggestions or additions to this recipe? Need advice about getting started in the kitchen? Email me: QueensJournalfood@gmail.com

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