The weather has been surprisingly cold for this Los Angeles resident. I have been craving a crusty, creamy pot pie but frankly was too lethargic to prepare the many steps of this classic American recipe. When I couldn’t find a restaurant serving it for carryout, I decided to streamline the stages of my older recipe. I also wanted to develop it for turkey or chicken.
I happened to have had a cooked turkey breast in my fridge and puff pastry in my freezer. From there it was just figuring out how to skip unnecessary steps from my earlier recipe. You’ll find you need an ovenproof deep skillet or frying pan and a medium bowl. That’s all. If you want to make this truly Seriously Simple, chop up the poultry and vegetables before you start. It is easy to prepare once you have everything ready.
A friend of mine always adds sherry to her recipe so I tried it and loved the extra depth of flavor the sherry or marsala (if you prefer) add. I only had 4-inch squares of frozen puff pastry, so I cut them into different shapes and placed them on the filling strategically. That way the bubbly filling could peek out for a welcoming rustic touch. A sprinkling of Parmesan cheese adds a cheesy, golden touch. I accompanied this with a glass of hard apple cider, but a glass of prosecco or chardonnay would be equally satisfying.
One Skillet Poultry Pot Pie with Puff Pastry Crust
Serves 4 to 6
- 8 tablespoons (1/2 cup) unsalted butter
- 2 leeks, white part and light green part only, cleaned and finely chopped
- 1/2 pound mushrooms, any combination of cremini, shiitake and chanterelles, cut into large dice
- 1 cup frozen petit pois, defrosted
- 3/4 pound or 2 cups (2-inch) chunks of skinless cooked chicken or turkey breast
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 medium carrots peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1/2 pound Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch dice
- 1 cup pearl frozen pearl onions, defrosted
- 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 3 1/2 cups extra-rich turkey or chicken stock
- 1/2 cup sherry or marsala
- Salt and white pepper, to taste
- Smoked paprika, to taste
- 3 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
- 1 large sheet of frozen puff pastry, (8 1/2 inches to 14 inches), defrosted
- 1 large egg, beaten
- 2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1. In an 11-inch ovenproof deep skillet or cast-iron skillet melt 2 tablespoons of butter on medium heat. Add the leeks and saute for about 4 minutes or until nicely softened.
2. Add the mushrooms and saute for 3 more minutes or until softened. Transfer the leeks and mushrooms along with the cooking juices to a medium bowl. Add the peas and turkey or chicken chunks to the vegetables and reserve.
3. Add the olive oil to the skillet on medium-high heat and saute the carrots and potatoes for about 5 minutes or until slightly softened, stirring occasionally. Transfer to the bowl with cooked vegetables. Add the defrosted onions. Mix and reserve.
4. Melt the remaining 6 tablespoons of butter to the skillet on medium heat. Sprinkle in the flour and cook, stirring constantly for 3 minutes. Slowly add the stock and sherry or marsala, salt and pepper, dash of smoked paprika and whisk the sauce until it is thickened and smooth, about 3 more minutes. Add the cooked vegetables and poultry mixture along with the parsley and mix well. Taste for seasoning.
5. Preheat the oven to 400 F. If necessary, roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface to a 10 by 14-inch rectangle. Cut the pieces of pastry to fit the diameter of the dish. I like to place a few different sizes on top to create a rustic look. Brush the rim of the dish with water. Place the pastry pieces on top of the filling allowing some filling to show. Make a few slashes in the pastry and bake on a sheet pan for 40-45 minute or until golden brown and bubbling.
6. Sprinkle the Parmesan cheese on the last 15 minutes of baking time to brown the crust. Remove from the oven and let sit for 10 minutes. Serve.
(Diane Rossen Worthington is an authority on new American cooking. She is the author of 18 cookbooks, including “Seriously Simple Parties,” and a James Beard Award-winning radio show host. You can contact her at www.seriouslysimple.com.)
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