My nesting instincts are falling in line with last time.
It’s all about food.
Our pantry is spotless and filled with pasta, canned tomatoes, six kinds of flour. When you open the freezer, something falls on you.
(Let’s not talk about the inside of the fridge door.)
Open the freezer, you’ll find stacks of disposable pans of Shepard’s pie, chicken enchiladas, lasagnas and chicken pot pies.
How luxurious, this bounty.
Since James was here all weekend, I could sleep in-between meal preparation. His leave starts soon and I’ll have help. That’s good because I feel like a Manatee. Actually, I kind of look like a Manatee.
Enjoy some Chicken Pot Pie
Helen Jane’s Super Nesty Chicken Pot Pie
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup canola oil
1 onion, chopped small
3 stalks celery, chopped small
2 leeks, just the mid parts, chopped small
1 cup flour
4 cups chicken stock
2 roasted or rotisserie chickens (I’ve have been known to roast my own, but you can buy yours) with all the chicken picked off and chopped into roughly 1/2 inch pieces and the carcasses saved in the freezer for future chicken stock.
3 carrots, chopped small
1 package frozen corn
1 package frozen peas
1 package frozen puff pastry. I like Pepperridge Farm or (if you can afford it) Dufour for this.
1 egg, beaten
Salt and pepper to taste
Thaw the puff pastry on the counter (it takes about 45 minutes). On a flour-dusted surface, roll out to a 1/2 inch thickness. Take your containers and turn upside down on top of the pastry and trace around an extra 2 inches with a sharp knife to make a lid for the baking dish.
Put canola oil and butter in a large stockpot, heat to medium. Add onions, celery and leeks. Stir until translucent or about 7 minutes. Sprinkle flour over the melty onions and stir fiercely for 3-4 minutes. Stir so all the flour cooks through.
Preheat the oven to 400°.
Heat the pan to medium-high. Slowly, ever so slowly, pour in the chicken stock, whisking quickly to incorporate.
Keep whisking until all the flour and chicken has come together in a tasty, creamy sauce.
Continue to stir and add chicken pieces, carrots, peas and corn.
Stir and cook for 10 more minutes until heated through.
Brush the insides of the baking dishes with canola oil.
When the chicken mixture is cooked through, pour into the prepared dishes. Cover with the lid of puff pastry and press on top so that it the lid sticks.
Brush the beaten egg across the top of all the puff pastry and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Bake one container off for roughly 25 minutes.
Tightly cover the rest of the chicken filling puff pastry covered containers with aluminum foil. Freeze.
When it’s time to eat, put in the oven at 400 for about 50 minutes.
You’ll be the hit of the superbusy set.