Sunday, January 26, 2014

Chicken Pot Pie

This week was the first week of my CSA Share.  For those of you who don't know what is, basically, once a week, I receive a box of vegetables from a collection of farms.  It is always a surprise of what I get, so it makes me experiment with my cooking.  For more information click here.  

With all of my vegetables and a free Saturday afternoon.  I decided to do some heavy duty cooking and make chicken pot pie from scratch.  I always look to the food network for my recipes.  This time, I cooked the Barefoot Contessa's Recipe, although I did skimp with pre-made pie crusts.  

In addition, I added some more veggies that I had on hand from my farm share.  This week, I got purple carrots, which added a lot of nice colors!

I ended up with three pies and enough filling for a fourth, but not enough dough.  I ate one and froze everything else!  All in all it was a success!

3 whole (6 split) chicken breasts, bone-in, skin-on
3 tablespoons olive oil
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
5 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
2 cups yellow onions, chopped (2 onions)
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup heavy cream
2 cups medium-diced carrots, blanched for 2 minutes
1 (10-ounce) package frozen peas (2 cups)
1 1/2 cups frozen small whole onions
2 cups medium-diced turnips, blanched for 2 minutes
2 cups of diced celery
1/2 cup minced fresh parsley leaves

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Place the chicken breasts on a baking sheet and rub them with olive oil. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Roast for 35 to 40 minutes, or until cooked through. Set aside until cool enough to handle, then remove the meat from the bones and discard the skin. Cut the chicken into large dice. You will have 4 to 6 cups of cubed chicken.

In a small saucepan, heat the chicken stock and dissolve the bouillon cubes in the stock. In a large pot or Dutch oven, melt the butter and saute the onions over medium-low heat for 10 to 15 minutes, until translucent. Add the flour and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes. Add the hot chicken stock to the sauce. Simmer over low heat for 1 more minute, stirring, until thick. Add 2 teaspoons salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and heavy cream. Add the cubed chicken, carrots, peas, onions and parsley. Mix well.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Divide the filling equally among 4 ovenproof bowls. Divide the dough into quarters and roll each piece into an 8-inch circle. Brush the outside edges of each bowl with the egg wash, then place the dough on top. Trim the circle to 1/2-inch larger than the top of the bowl. Crimp the dough to fold over the side, pressing it to make it stick. Brush the dough with egg wash and make 3 slits in the top. Sprinkle with sea salt and cracked pepper. Place on a baking sheet and bake for 1 hour, or until the top is golden brown and the filling is bubbling hot.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

This video makes me so happy. It began when I was working on the President’s 2012 reelection campaign. My FO suggested that at the beginning of every team meeting I play a video to inspire people. So at my very first meeting, I played this video, and by the end of it, much of the room was in tears, including myself. The president inspires me everyday. I feel like a lot of people forget that, getting too caught up in the current media, forgetting how amazing he truly is. Whenever I need a reminder, I watch this video (aka like once a month). It always makes me feel better; it fires me up!