Super Chicken Bowl

In food on 02/07/2010 at 6:07 pm

Buffalo chicken wings for the Super Bowl are so passé. Not that I don’t love meat that comes with its own handle, but it’s time to scrimp and stretch the last remaining bits of our lovely farm-bought flesh. So why not do as the Brits and add tons of starch to a lil’ itty bit of meat = chicken pot pie!

The other half was fantasizing about eating a steaming pie at work, aka the North Pole. So I’m obliging. We’re gonna do it lazy jeju style, with as few pots as possible and with the least amount of work, but not skimping out on flavor. Enter frozen puff pastry and my friend Mister Curry to assist me in the matter.

Don’t let this dish scare you. It’s really just stew surrounded by pastry. Make the filling ahead of time, put into oven-proof bowls, top with pastry and bake when you crave a hearty bowl of love. Or if you are lazy beyond lazy, warm up the filling and bake the pastry separately for a faux deconstructed pot pie. The key is to prep everything al dente, since the time in the oven will overcook the different components otherwise.

Usually the crust on top is different from the crust below. You want puffy and flaky on top (puff pastry) and thick and buttery below (Goya makes a short pastry crust with lard that is acceptable to the other half). When I was a kid, I used to eat Banquet or Swanson pot pies just to be able to break off pieces of the crispy tined crust and dunk it into the yellowish white bechemel, or snot sauce as I used to say. Those were the days when I had a microwave, BOH (before other half).

This is a perfect Super Bowl treat, not too messy and very all-American. For dinner parties, slap it together in cute ramekins for an haute take on the traditional pot pie. Either way, just make sure you leave enough crust hanging over for adequate dipping bits.

chicken, turkey, pork or beef (your fav cut: dark or white, bone-in)
baby carrots (more tender)
red onions, chopped
garlic (powder or chopped)
celery, potato, turnips, peas, parsley (optional add-ins)
flour for roux
butter or lard
curry powder or herbs, i.e. rosemary, oregano, basil, thyme
salt & pepper
chicken stock (or white wine, or plain water)
frozen puff pastry (thaw on counter 1 hr before use)
1 egg

Boil your meat just covered with water for 20 minutes. Season as you would with soup. Take out meat and chop or shred. Save stock.

Saute vegetables in butter or lard for 10 minutes, until caramelized. Season to taste. Add flour to coat and stir until you can’t see white flour. Add stock and curry powder until covered. Simmer till mixture thickens. Add meat, mix and turn off heat.

Preheat oven 350 degrees F. Unfold the thawed puff pastry sheets. Invert individual crocks on the pastry sheet and, using a sharp knife, cut circles around the outside of the bowls, slightly larger than the bowl itself. Put filling 3/4 full into ramekins or pot pie dishes (or estimate size of pastry to cut if bowls already have filling).

Cap each dish with a pastry circle (or square to not waste), press dough around rim to form a seal. Press tines of fork down along lip of dish. Lightly beat the egg with 1 Tbsp of water to make an egg wash, brush on the pastry. Sprinkle the pastry with parmesan if you have it. Bake for 20 minutes, until puffed and golden.

Top secret jeju tip: Add a dollop of honey to mellow out the sauce.

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