The night before Penelope was born, my best friend from childhood, Hillary, showed up as a surprise at my front door! She has been such a blessing, helping me take care of Z and A, cooking, cleaning, and more. Let’s talk about her cooking for a moment: It’s GREAT. She cooks with so much joy and love. I am convinced it makes a difference. Also, she is from Lancaster County, PA, and the food that comes from that area of the country cannot be beaten.
One of the first nights after Penny was born, Hillary made me this delicious Chicken Pie, and the crust is seriously mouthwatering. She made two of them and I think I have eaten leftovers 3 times already. There is nothing like comfort food when you are in bed for the better part of a week, babymooning. Hillary generously offered to share her recipe with everyone! Yay! It is a little time-intensive, but SO worth it.
Yield: 2 pies (6 to 8 servings each)
4 cups chicken (or any meat you prefer)
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 medium potatoes, diced (peeling is optional)
1 ¾ cups sliced carrots
1 cup frozen peas
1 cup frozen corn
1 medium onion, chopped
1 cup butter or margarine
1 cup flour
2 ½ tsp salt
2 tsp pepper
1½ cups milk
3 cups chicken broth (stock is fine too)
pastry for two double-crust 9-inch pies (recipe to follow)
Boil potatoes and carrots in a large stockpot for 8 minutes.
Reduce heat, cover, add peas and corn and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes.
Drain vegetables and set aside.
While the veggies are boiling, boil chicken pieces for 8 minutes in a separate pot.
Drain chicken and shred it to your liking using 2 forks.
Add garlic to shredded chicken and mix.
Set aside, allowing the chicken to marinate.
In a large skillet, sauté onion in butter until tender.
Stir in the flour, salt, and pepper until blended.
Gradually stir in broth and milk.
Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened.
Add the chicken, peas, corn, potatoes, and carrots. Remove from heat.
Never-fail pie crust
Yield: 4 9-in pie crusts
3 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1 cups shortening
1 egg, beaten
½ cup cold water
1 tsp vinegar
Mix flour and salt.
Cut in shortening.
Combine remaining ingredients and blend into flour with hands.
Line two 9-inch pie plates with pastry.
Fill pastry shells with chicken mixture.
Roll out remaining pastry to fit top of pies. Cut slits or decorative cutouts in pastry. Be creative! Cut out letters, shapes, or simply poke a design into the shell with a sharp knife.
Place over filling; style the edges. This is another opportunity to be creative!
Bake one pie at 425ºF for 35 to 40 minutes or until crust is lightly browned. Let stand for 15 minutes before cutting.
Cover and freeze remaining pie for up to 4 months.
(Or, if you have a big family or simply a very hungry family, bake both pies at the same time and refrigerate the leftovers!)
To serve frozen pie: Cover edges of frozen piecrust with foil; place on a baking sheet. Bake at 425ºF for 30 minutes. Reduce heat to 350ºF and bake for 70 to 80 minutes longer, or until crust is golden brown.