Chicken Potpies are sometimes ranked right up there as the quintessential comfort food. Where puff pastry is utilized, how can a dish go wrong? Puff pastry - the icing on the cake. It’s placed on top of each chicken potpie baking dish, enveloping the brothy chicken goodness below. I cut the puff pastry squares larger than the original recipe suggested because when served, I wanted sufficient overhang to be able to tear off and dip and scoop the deliciousness underneath.
I used a recipe found in Everyday Food and it’s spot on good! You can assemble pieces ahead of time and/or split up baking some of the baking dishes one night and the rest the next evening. This takes minimal time to assemble but requires some cooling down time of the chicken broth mixture and re-chilling the puff pastry step, so plan accordingly if you whip these up. You won’t be disappointed serving these portion-controlled potpies, it’s a keeper.
- If you’d rather make one large potpie, use a 2-quart baking dish and roll pastry so that it’s 1-inch wider than the baking dish; cut vents and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour.
- The original recipe called for four 12-ounce baking dishes. I didn’t have that size so I prepared them in 8-ounce ramekins. The chicken broth mixture filled 7 1/2 8-ounce ramekins.
- Puff Pastry: I wanted more of an overhang and the ability to break off pieces to dip and scoop up the brothy goodness below so I cut my pastry squares larger than directed. Otherwise, cut your pastry squares so that they are 1-inch larger than your baking dishes.
- Other add-in ideas: Sweet Corn, celery, broccoli. I haven’t tried these, but if you have some of these ingredients and need to use them before they go bad, 1/2 cup or so may be great additions.
Makes 4 – 7 servings (depending on baking dish(es) used)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 medium onion, diced
2 carrots, diced
1/2 cup all-purpose flour, plus additional for rolling out pastry
1/2 teaspoon salt
Ground pepper, to taste
4 cups low-sodium, low-fat chicken broth
3 cups (1 pound) cooked chicken, cut into 1-inch pieces – (about 3 chicken breasts)
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
1-2 sheets frozen Pepperidge Farms® Puff Pastry, thawed (see notes above)
1 large egg yolk
1 teaspoon water
In a medium saucepan or stockpot, melt butter over medium to low heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook until the onions softens, about 6 minutes. Add flour, salt and pepper. Cook, constantly stirring until the mixture is a pale yellow, has a nutty aroma and has thickened (like cooked oatmeal), about 5 minutes.
Add chicken broth and continue whisking frequently. Bring to a boil and continue stirring until it thickens, about 8-10 minutes. Reduce the heat source and simmer, cooking for about another 10 minutes. Stir in the chicken, peas and thyme; season with salt and pepper to taste.
Evenly distribute the mixture among either 4 12-ounce baking dishes -OR- 6-7 8-ounce baking dishes. Refrigerate until the chicken broth mixture is at room temperature, about 20-30 minutes (this previous steps can be done ahead of time and left in the refrigerator for the day until you’re ready to add the pastry top and serve).
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
On a lightly floured work surface, roll puff pastry to 1/8-inch thick. Cut into 4 equal squares, allowing 1-inch plus larger than dish (if you are using smaller baking dishes, plan the pastry out to cover each baking dish. I used two sheets for 7 1/2 baking dishes). With the tip of a knife, cut vents into the pastry. Place the pastry squares on top of each baking dish.
Beat the egg yolk and water in a small bowl. With a pastry brush, brush egg wash on pastry. Refrigerate the prepared baking dishes for 15-30 minutes. Meanwhile, line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil. Place the baking dishes on the lined cookie sheet, evenly placed. Bake until pastry is golden brown and juices are bubbling, about 25-35 minutes.
Set the hot baking dishes on top of individual serving plates and serve.
Side Note: Don’t forget to warn the loved ones you are serving that the baking dishes are hot.
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