This month's Royal Foodie Joust with its ingredients of fennel, dairy & parsley had me a little stumped at first. Then suddenly I had too many ideas & couldn't decided which way to go. In the end I decided when in doubt comfort food is always the best way to go. Well, as far as I'm concerned you can't get much more comforting than a pot pie.
For this pie I made a creamy chicken filling featuring fresh fennel, onion, carrots, peas & mushrooms. Parsley is added at the end of making the sauce to add a little brightness. I also added fennel fronds to the filling to boost the fennel flavor. I love the way the fennel tastes in this, it just adds a nice warmth to the overall flavor.
The crust is a basic butter pastry which cooks up wonderfully flaky, just make sure to use cold butter & not overwork it. I let the crust hang over the edge about an inch so that there's lots of extra crust, I like to have a little piece with every bite of filling.
Fennel & Chicken Pot Pie
1 1/4 c all-purpose flour
1 t salt
1/2 T sugar
8 T butter, cold & cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/4 - 1/2 c cold water
Put flour, salt & sugar into a food processor & pulse to blend. Add butter & pulse until it forms a coarse meal texture. Sprinkle 1/4 c cold water on top & pulse until the dough clumps together when pinched. If the dough isn't coming together add more water 1 T at a time. Split the dough into two balls & flatten them into discs. Wrap in plastic wrap & chill for 30 minutes.
2 T unsalted butter
1/2 c onion, diced
1/2 c carrots, diced
1/2 c fennel bulb, diced
6 crimini mushrooms, sliced
1 T all-purpose flour
3/4 c milk (I used skim)
1 heaping c diced cooked chicken
1/2 c frozen peas
2 t flat leaf parsley, chopped
1 t fennel fronds, chopped
Melt the butter in a sauce pan over medium heat. Add the onions, carrots, fennel & mushrooms. Cook until the vegetables are beginning to get tender & the mushrooms have released their liquid. Sprinkle the flour over the vegetables & stir for 1 minute. Slowly add the milk while stirring. Cook & stir until thickened. Add in the chicken & peas. Stir in the parsley & fennel fronds. Season with salt & pepper
Preheat oven to 400 F.
Split the filling between two single serving ramekins.
Roll out each disc of the pastry dough into circles about 1/8-inch thick. Lay the discs over the top of the filling letting it hang over the edge of the ramekins. For a golden crust brush it with a little beaten egg. Make a few slits in the crust with a sharp knife.
Place the ramekin on baking sheet & bake for 25 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.
Makes two single serving pies
Thanks to Jenn the Leftover Queen for hosting another fun month of the Royal Foodie Joust.