Chicken Pot Pie and Side Salad

Chicken Pot Pie, Hot Out of the Oven

I actually look forward to going to the Dr.’s office.  I get to read cooking magazines and get inspiration for recipes.  I have even asked the office staff to make copies of recipes I am particularly excited about that I don’t have time to copy down. (You are thinking, “What a Geek! Get a subscription and stay home!”)  Yes I am a geek who is not always rationale…

I have been cooking for my family regularly for about the last 12 years. I think I have it down. I’ve read and used thousands of recipes and ingredients.  And then as I start looking at casseroles, I start noticing celeriac root.  What the heck is celeriac root?  I was stumped!

Celeriac is a type of celery that is grown for its edible roots. It grows in a bulb shape and its skin is peeled to reveal the celeriac root vegetable that you can eat.  Because I didn’t really know much about its flavor, and didn’t have time to research, I almost left it out of the pot pie.  But when I was as the grocery store I decided to ask the fruit and vegetable grocer who was working in the aisle.  “Don’t leave it out!” he said.  “Celeriac will add amazing flavor.  People use it all the time in casseroles and soups.”  (Everyone except me who had no idea what it was…)

So I bought it and used it.  YUM!  It is a very savory vegetable and agreeing with my grocer, I would not leave it out!  The parsnips however, are optional.  My kids really didn’t like their flavor and I ended up letting them pick them out.  Just skip them if you think they won’t like them.  There are plenty of vegetables inside this pie.

The Verdict

9’s and 10’s.  The kids told me if I made them eat the parsnips they would rate it a 7.  Now that’s low!  Not wanting low ratings, I quickly acquiesced let them pick them out.  Try this warm, savory pie for dinner.  If you don’t get around to it before St. Patrick’s day, put a shamrock in the middle instead of a heart!

Side Salads Waiting for the Chicken Pot Pie

Voila! Chicken Pot Pie and Side Salad

Ingredients

3 C low sodium chicken broth

1 C cubed baking potato, can peel or partially peel if desired

1 C cubed sweet potato, peeled

1 C cubed peeled celeric (celery root)

1 C sliced parsnip (optional, kids may not like)

(10 oz.) package frozen pearl onions 1

1.5 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces

2.25 oz. all-purpose flour (or gluten-free substitute)

1 1/2 C skim milk (or milk substitute)

1 1/2 C frozen peas, thawed

1/4 C chopped parsley

2 T chopped fresh thyme

1 1/2 t salt

1 t freshly ground pepper

cooking spray

1/2 (14.1 oz.) package refrigerator pie dough or other dough substitute

1 egg, lightly beaten (optional)

Instructions

Pre-heat oven 425

1. Bring broth to a boil. Add potato, sweet potato, celeriac, and onions; cover, reduce heat, and simmer 6 minutes.

2. Add chicken. Cook 5 minutes or until chicken is done.

3. Remove chicken and vegetables from pot.

4. Increase heat to medium.

5. Separately, lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cup for accurate measurement and add to milk.   Whisk until well blended.

6. Add milk mixture to broth.  Cook 5 minutes or until thickened, stirring frequently.

7. Stir in chicken mixture, peas, parsley, thyme, salt and pepper.

8. Spoon into a 2 – quart glass or ceramic baking dish coated with cooking spray.

9.  Unroll pie dough. Cut small slits (or a heart design for Valentine’s Day) into center of dough to allow steam to escape.

10.  Place dough over filling and brush with egg if desired.

11.  Bake for 16 minutes or until filling is bubbling.  Portion a side salad while waiting.

12.  Let dish stand for 5 minutes and serve with a side salad.

Pre-Prep Opportunities

1. Cube and slice all vegetables ahead of time and store in refrigerator.

2. Prepare recipe through step 8.  Cover well and store in refrigerator until ready to make the dough. Cook for 30 minutes or until bubbling.

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