Use What You Have: Chicken Pot Hand Pies for National Pie Day (3/14)
I love a good pie, but normally for Pie Day (3/14) people always go for sweet. And don't get me wrong, I love all types of PIES! From apple pies, to pecan pies and sweet potato pies, if you name a pie, I will tell you it's my favorite. But I wanted to make something savory for lunch and decided to put a twist on one of my favorite savory pies-the chicken pot pie. Now, normally you would put a chicken pot pie in a regular 9" pie crust, but I was like, "What if I made it easy to eat on the go?" After all, who likes to wait for a chicken pot pie to cool before you eat it? And If you don't get the consistency right, you end up with a runny mess.
I decided to make a chicken pot hand pie using only things I had in the refrigerator. After all, I hate wasting food! I'm not a big fan of sweet peas, which is like the staple in this dish, so I used chicken, mushrooms, carrots, celery and garlic. I sautéed everything (the chicken was already cooked and leftover from a previous meal) and then let it cook in a little chicken stock. Once everything was tender, I made a cornstarch slurry with equal parts water and cornstarch to thicken up the mix. I needed it pretty thick so that the liquid wouldn't leak out the sides of the pies when I put them together. I mixed the slurry in with the chicken pot pie brew and let it thicken. Then I let it cool.
While the mix cooled, I pulled out some premade pie crust. I used a large round pastry circle and cut out as many 4" circles as the pie crusts would make. Once the chicken pot pie mixture was cool, I scooped a small amount into the middle of each pie crust round. I folded the crusts over, and, using a little water, I crimped the edges together with a fork. To make it easier to fry, I put all of the precooked pies in the refrigerator to chill.
Since the mix was done, all I really had to do was cook the crust. I heated some oil up to about 350 degrees in a skillet and cooked each pie until it was brown on each side (2-4 minutes each side). Once they cooled, I couldn't wait to try them. They were so good! The crust was buttery and flaky and the savory bit in the middle was so rich and creamy-just like a real chicken pot pie! I ate several just taste testing them! The best part is that the family gave them a thumbs up and I used up some vegetables up that would have otherwise went bad in the veggie bin.
What fun ways have you found to use up that old food in your refrigerator? Let us know in the comments below.