Chicken Pot Pie

20130114_172601-2As temperatures are dropping to the low-30’s, I decided it was time for some good old fashioned comfort food to ease the pain of this uncomfortably cold weather. As I was wrapped up in a blanket on my couch leisurely scrolling through Pinterest, this chicken pot pie recipe caught my eye. I love all things resembling a biscuit so I couldn’t resist this Food Network classic.

One of my favorite things about pot pie is how almost anything in the fridge can easily be chopped up and thrown in, even if the recipe doesn’t call for it. While I made mine with the basic celery, onion, carrots and green beans, the possibilities really are endless. I was secretly wishing I had some Brussels sprouts or parsnips to change it up a bit. However, the second I heated up the olive oil and dropped in the chopped veggies, the aroma that filled my apartment made me realize I had made the right choice and I was already feeling comforted by the softening, sautéed goodness.

When the filling was almost complete, I whipped out my favorite kitchen appliance, the food processor, to get started on the biscuit topping. I began by combining the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and butter. With the addition of the oil and buttermilk, the perfect biscuit consistency was almost instantaneously achieved. Dropping the batter on top, I realized making six evenly sized biscuits was harder than I thought, hence the mildly uneven seven biscuits that formed on the top. Despite it’s somewhat haphazard appearance, I like to tell myself, it still tastes good, right!? Twenty minutes later, the bubbling, golden brown pot pie came out of the oven and I could hardly wait to dig in. My friends and I instantly fell in love with the buttery, flaky biscuit topping, wishing that I had made more as a side once the one on our plate was devoured. I had so many leftovers the next day that I decided to make more biscuits to eat alongside my dinner for the next two nights, which is something that I definitely recommend. Here is the full recipe for this delicious meal, which has been slightly adapted from Ellie Krieger’s recipe on the Food Network website.

Ingredients

For the filling:

  • Cooking spray
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1/2 pound green beans, trimmed and chopped into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups lowfat milk
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup peas, thawed if frozen
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves

For the biscuit crust:

  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1/2 cup lowfat buttermilk

Directions

To make the filling: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Spray a large shallow casserole dish, or 6 individual casserole dishes with cooking spray.

Season the chicken with 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. In a large nonstick skillet, heat 2 teaspoons of the oil over a medium-high heat. Add the chicken to the pan and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Transfer the chicken with its juices to a bowl. .

Add 2 more teaspoons of oil to the same pan and heat it over a medium-high heat. Add the onions, carrots and celery and cook until the vegetables begin to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the green beans, garlic and remaining salt and pepper and cook for 2 minute more. Add the milk. Stir the flour into the broth until it is completely dissolved and add to the pan. Cook, stirring, until the mixture comes to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for 2 minutes more. Return the chicken with its juices back to the pan. Add the peas and thyme and stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Spoon the mixture into the baking dish or individual dishes.

To make the crust: Put the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt into a food processor and pulse a few times to combine. Add the butter and pulse about 12 times, or until pebble sized pieces are formed.

Add the buttermilk then oil to the food processor and pulse until just moistened. Do not over mix. Drop the batter in 6 mounds on top of the chicken mixture (1 mound on each individual dish, if using) spreading the batter out slightly. Bake until filling is bubbling and the biscuit topping is golden brown, about 20 minutes.

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