Comforting Chicken Pot Pie
I think this recipe is perfect for all of you experiencing Autumn at the moment! It's warm, comforting and hearty which is exactly the type of food I love to eat when the weather gets windy and cold. I got the idea to make it from my older sister when we were watching an episode of "Nigella Express." The pie looked so good; the way Nigella cracked the pastry into the gravy laden chicken and vegetable pot. She made individual serves, but I decided to make two big pies (the recipe and appropriate quantities written below) for my family and some friends that were over at the time. We served it with mushy peas and pumpkin which complimented the sweetness in the pie thanks to the splosh of marsala.
9 rashers of lean bacon, cut into 1cm squares
1 onion, chopped
15 - 20 button mushrooms, cut into cubes
750g chicken breast, into bite size pieces
10 tbsp plain flour
2 tsp dried thyme
4 tbsp butter or margarine
4 cups hot [good quality] chicken stock
5 tbsp marsala
3 carrots, sliced
+ 3 sheets of puff pastry
+ mushy peas, to serve
+ mashed pumpkin, to serve
Set out two large pots suitable for the oven. Remove the pastry from the freezer so that it will thaw in time. Preheat the oven to around 200-210 degrees (fan-forced). In a large fry pan, heat a tiny bit of oil and softened the onion. Add the bacon and cook until cooked or crispy to your preference. Add mushrooms and softened them in pan along with onion and bacon. While your waiting for mushrooms to softened, toss the chicken, thyme and flour in a freezer bag so chicken is evenly coated. When mushrooms are ready, melt butter in pan. Add the chicken to the pan once the butter is melted through, and cook until chicken is coloured and cooked. While chicken is cooking, I cooked my carrots in the microwave. Pour in hot stock and marsala, stirring so that a sauce forms. Add the now cooked carrots. Let bubble away for 5 minutes to 7 minutes. Turn off frypan and evenly distribute this chicken filling into the pots. Make a pastry rim for the two pots, wetting so that the pastry sticks. The rim will need to be about 2cm thick and curled around the top of the pots. Then cut two lids for each of the pots. They will need to be larger than the circumfrence of the pot, and will need to be wet slightly so they stick to the pastry rim. Press the rims/lid down with fingers or fork. Add three fork prongs in the center of the pie. Cook pies for around 30 - 40 minutes, rotating halfway through cooking time. Pies are ready when the pastry is magnificently puffed up.