Chicken Pot Pie

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It’s beginning to get a little cooler here, which I hate because I love summer.  However, I do like the comfort foods that are associated with fall and winter–stews, roasts, and pot pie!  It was a rainy day when I made this last week and I had leftover rotisserie chicken, so pot pie it was!  This recipe is adapted from Ina Garten, so you know it’s good!!!

Ingredients
2 cups shredded chicken
5 cups chicken stock
2 chicken bouillon cubes
12 tbs. unsalted butter
2 cups chopped yellow onions
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup heavy cream
2 cups diced carrots, blanched
10 oz package frozen peas
2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
Pie crust
1 egg, beaten with 1 tbs. water

Directions
Preheat oven to 350°F.

In a small saucepan, heat up chicken stock and bouillon cubes, making sure the cubes are fully dissolved.  In a large pot, melt butter over medium-low heat.  Add onions until they become translucent.  Add flour and turn the burner to low.  Stir mixture thoroughly until it becomes a very light brown, very wet sand with onion mixture.  Add stock and stir until it becomes thick.  Add salt, pepper, and heavy cream.  Taste and adjust seasoning accordingly.  Then add chicken, carrots, and peas; mix well.

Divide mixture into 4 ovenproof bowls.  Divide pie crusts into 4 pieces to cover the bowls.  Brush some egg wash on the edges of the bowl, then place pie crust.  Crimp and seal crust over the bowl.  Brush crust with egg wash, sprinkle pepper (and sea salt) on crust, and then cut 3 small slits into the crust.  Place bowls on a baking sheet and place in the oven for about 45 minutes to an hour, or until the crust is golden brown.

Cook’s Notes
This can be a baby led weaning recipe.  I would either take a baby portion of the crust and stew and have it sit in the freezer for at least 30 minutes before serving.  Or I would just cook the crust separately and serve the warmed stew and crust.  The stew bit is already cooked, but when it comes out of the oven it is soooooo piping hot.  My son’s pot pie sat for an hour, even after we put an ice cube in, before it was cool enough for him to eat.

To save time, I always use a cooked rotisserie chicken from the grocery store.  A whole chicken costs $4.99 where I am, and we never eat an entire one for dinner.  So I repurpose the leftover chicken into the pot pie.  It’s easier and saves me time.  I also buy pie crusts just because it’s easier and saves me time.  But I know some people like to make their own crusts, which you can do of course.

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Turkey Meatloaf

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So with Sammy getting the hang of eating solids, we decided it was time to venture out from fruits and veg into meats. This Ina Garten recipe was a hit when Oliver was her age, and so tonight it was Sammy’s turn (she was a bit skeptical, but ate it with a little mash and steamed carrots).  I halved the recipe because no one wants meatloaf for days.

Ingredients
1 1/2 cup of chopped onions
1 tbs. olive oil
1/2 tsp. of fresh thyme
1 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1/6 cup of Worcestershire sauce
3/8 cup of chicken stock
3/4 tsp. tomato paste
2 1/2 lbs. of ground turkey
3/4 cup of plain bread crumbs
1 egg, beaten
~1/2 cup of ketchup

Directions
Preheat the oven to 325°F.

Warm the olive oil in a saute pan over medium heat.  Add onions, thyme, salt, and pepper and cook until the onions are translucent.  Mix in the Worcestershire sauce, chicken stock, and tomato paste.  Take mixture and put in a bowl and let it cool in the freezer for about 5-10  minutes.  You don’t want to put your hot mixture in with your cool turkey because you will end up cooking some of the turkey.  Plus you don’t want to burn yourself doing the next step.

In a large bowl, combine onion mixture, turkey, bread crumbs, and egg. Mix well, but don’t over mix the turkey.  Once combined, put mixture on a baking sheet (I usually line mine with aluminum foil so there’s less clean up) and form mixture into a loaf shape.  Then take the ketchup and spread it evenly on top using an offset spatula.

Place in the oven for about 45-50 minutes, or until you get an internal temperature of 160°F (I always go by internal temperature).  Serve immediately and the next day the leftovers can be used in sandwiches.