Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Asparagus and Chicken Pot Pie

Elegant comfort food!  This is a nice pot pie!
     Pate Brisee Recipe:  Place about 1 cup of flour into a mixing bowl.
     Add 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt.
     Add 3/4 tablespoon of sugar.
     Rice the flour by adding a few drops of ice water at a time while stirring with a whisk.  (The flour should look like grains of rice.)
     Cut 1 1/2 ounces of unsalted butter into pea size pieces and drop them in a bowl of ice water.
     Gently add a few pieces of the chilled hard butter at a time to the riced flour.
     Work the dough lightly with your fingers and for a minimal period of time leaving exposed small pieces of butter.
     Chill the dough till it becomes very firm.
     Roll the pate brisee into a thin sheet on a floured counter top.
     Drape the dough sheet over the tart ring mold.
     Press the dough in place gently, then trim the edges.
     Chicken and Asparagus Pot Pie Filling Recipe:  Boil 3 cups of chicken stock in a sauce pot over medium high heat.
     Add about 5 or 6 ounces of large bite size pieces of chicken thighs.
     Add a very small handful of each of these coarsely chopped vegetables: 
     - Carrots
     - Celery
     - Leek
     - Green onion
     - Onion
     Add 1 small handful of thin sliced asparagus stalks.  (Use the tender part of the stalk and save the tips for another recipe.  Peel the asparagus if necessary.)
     Add sea salt and black pepper.
     Add 2 pinches of marjoram.
     Add 2 pinches of chopped Italian parsley.
     Add 2 pinches of sage.
     Reduce the temperature to medium heat.
     Simmer till the vegetables become al dente.
     Cook an equal amount of flour and butter over medium heat in a sauce pot while stirring to make a white roux.
     Add just enough of the white roux to the pot pie mixture in the sauce pot, while stirring, to thicken the broth to a medium thick sauce consistency.
     Add 1 splash of cream.
     Add a small splash of milk.
     Stir and reduce the pot pie filling, till the sauce becomes a medium thick consistency. 
     The sliced asparagus will combine with the sauce, to become the key flavor of the pot pie.
     Finally, add a small handful of peas.
     Remove the pot pie mixture from the heat and set aside to let it cool to room temperature.
     Assembly:  Lightly brush a small pop ring mold with butter.
     Roll a thin sheet of Pate Brisee.
     Drape the pie dough sheet over the ring mold and gently press it into place.
     Trim the edges, so the rim of the ring mold is covered by the dough.
     Spoon the cool chicken pot pie filling into the dough lined ring mold.
     Cut thin ribbon strips of the pie dough.
     Lay the strips of pate brisee dough on top of the pot pie mix in a lattice pattern.
     Trim the edges square to the ring mold vertically.
     Gently roll the edge of the dough to barely inside the ring mold rim, to form a light outer crust.  This step will make popping the ring easy when the pie is done baking.  (If you do this step then you will not break the crust when removing the mold later.)
     Brush the exposed dough lightly with milk.
     Bake in a 350 degree oven till the crust becomes golden brown.
     Carefully and gently remove the pop ring mold.
     Slide the pot pie onto a plate and garnish with parsley sprigs.
     This way of making a free standing chicken pot pie is well worth the effort!  This pot pie is elegant and it has an outstanding flavor.  The mild herbs and the asparagus make this pot pie very special.
     May I suggest a Les Jamelles Marsanne Vin de Pays d 'Oc French wine to go with dinner?  That Langeudoc region French "lemony" white wine flavor is a classic choice to accompany this pot pie.  Yum!  ...  Shawna

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