Chicken pot pie isn’t something that I was brought up on. In fact, when I was younger I always thought that it was just a smaller version of a TV dinner since the only ones I ever saw were frozen. It wasn’t until I had one in a restaurant that I said that I needed to try to make one at home.
I’ve been making chicken pot pie at home for several years now, but it wasn’t until watching an episode of Good Eats a week or two ago that I decided to change up my recipe a bit. You see, I’ve always made mine with pie crust, but Alton Brown said that was a no-no. Really? It always tastes pretty good to me! According to him, the perfect crust for a chicken pot pie is actually a puff pastry. Huh. So I decided to try it.
To make chicken pot pie, you need vegetables, of course. I pre-boil some carrots, celery, and frozen peas while making my white sauce.
*I always use leftover chicken or a rotisserie chicken when I make pot pie since it has more flavor to it, but if you don’t have any leftovers you can also add cubed chicken breast to the vegetables to cook.
The white sauce is made pretty similarly to any other white sauce – butter, flour, and milk. In addition to those things, some onions and chicken stock or broth are also added along with seasoned salt, pepper, thyme, and garlic powder.
So, okay. I have never used a puff pastry before and since I’d never made a pot pie with it, I decided to start off with a frozen one. Usually I make my own crust, but puff pastry is something that I need to practice making one of these days.
A frozen puff pastry comes in a sheet so I rolled it out on my pastry board to be sure it was the right size for my pie plate. If you don’t have a pastry board, you can use a pie plate to measure like I did before I got this board for Christmas.
Now that the puff pastry is rolled out, put it in the pie plate, cut off the corners and use them for patching up any areas without enough dough. Fill the crust with the veggies and leftover chicken (or in this case, leftover Thanksgiving turkey) then pour the white sauce over it. Cover with the second puff pastry and cut some small slits into the top so it can breathe while in the oven.
After baking for a half hour you get this puffy, flaky, plate full of deliciousness. Alton Brown was right. The proper crust for a chicken pot pie is most certainly a puff pastry, not a pie crust!
Let me tell you, my husband and my kids have always loved my pot pie. It’s been a family favorite for years, but everyone agreed that the puff pastry made it even better.
Look at that. Is that perfection, or what?