This updated version of a tried and true winter time staple will please and wow family and friends. Creamy chicken pot pie in a succulent gravy meets a crispy puff pastry crust. If possible, Buy a whole, organic chicken and, after removing the usable meat for the dish, reserve the carcass. You can use it to make the stock from scratch.  

Ingredients

  • 1 large chicken
  • 2 stalks of celery
  • 2 onions
  • 3 carrots
  • 1 rutabaga
  • 3 large parsnips
  • 1/2 cup of red or green peas
  • 5 Yukon gold potatoes
  • 1 sheet of puff pastry

For the veloute (gravy)

  • 1/2 gallon of chicken stock
  • 1 qt of heavy cream
  • Fresh thyme
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Cayenne

Preparation

Make the Stock:

Add enough cold water to the carcass to cover it completely. Then add 1 onion, 2 stalks of celery, and 2 carrots, and a sprig of fresh thyme. Bring to a boil then quickly reduce to a simmer. Cook for at least 2 hours.

Make the Filling:

While the stock is simmering peel carrots, rutabaga, parsnips, onions, potatoes, and clean celery.

Cut all vegetables in a uniform and small size to ensure even cooking. Once all the vegetables are diced, tossed with a small amount of oil in a bowl and roast in oven at 375* for about 10-12 minutes.

Cook until they are roasted but not mushy. Remove from oven and let rest on baking sheet. Then cook peas if dry accordingly until they are tender, if you are using frozen peas, keep frozen until needed.

In a 375* oven take chicken and season well with salt and pepper, bake in oven until juices run clear, about 12-15 minutes depending on size of chicken. Once chicken is cooked remove from oven and reserve juices and let chicken rest until needed. Chicken can be whole, diced, or sliced depending on preference.

Make the veloute (gravy):

Take chicken stock and reduce by half, i.e. 1 gallon would be reduced down to 1/2 gallon. This is done to produce a rich chicken flavor for the pot pie.

Once reduced add slowly to the stock one quart of heavy cream and bring to a simmer. You will need to thicken your gravy by using a roux or if you have gluten allergies a slurry of cornstarch and water can be used to thicken. I recommend using a roux if allergies are not a problem.

To make the roux take 1 cup of flour and mix with 1 cup of canola oil( or any oil you have at home). Then cook the mixture for about 5 minutes over low heat and slowly add while whisking into the chicken stock and cream mixture. Remember you want to add a little at a time until you achieve the consistency you are looking for. Usually a gravy thickness is well suited.

Once it is thick continue cooking for another 10-15 minutes to ensure all the roux is cooked out. Taste the mixture so see how much salt and pepper is needed, then add a pinch of cayenne and enough fresh thyme to compliment the gravy.

Finish the dish:

Bake puff pastry according to directions on package and set aside until ready to eat.

To serve, add roasted root vegetables and potatoes to gravy mix, stir to make sure vegetables are hot and taste to check all your seasonings. Place gravy mixture into a serving dish and put desired cuts of chicken on top of the gravy.

Serve immediately with puff pastry on top. Enjoy.