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Recipes

Chicken Pot Pie Casserole

Puff pastry reinvents this hearty standard.

February 14, 2018

Go old school with a twist. We recreated a chicken pot pie we had at a potluck, used puff pastry for the topping, and made in that kitchen workhorse — a 9-by-13-inch pan. Easy and delicious!

Serves six to eight people

Ingredients

  • 4 cups shredded cooked chicken — a rotisserie chicken works great.
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 medium carrots, diced
  • 1 large stalk celery, diced
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1 cup frozen baby lima beans or corn kernels
  • two 15-ounce cans butternut squash puree
  • one 12-ounce can or carton cream of chicken soup
  • 1 cup lower sodium chicken stock, plus more as needed
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons dry sherry or marsala wine
  • 2 bay leaves
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • dash of Tabasco sauce
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Puff Pastry Topping

  • 2 sheets frozen puff pastry (from a 17.3-ounce box), lightly thawed for 15 to 20 minutes
  • 1 large egg, beaten

Preparation

For Puff Pastry Topping, heat oven to 425 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Cut pastry into 12 equal pieces and arrange over the parchment. Brush tops with the beaten egg and put the tray in the freezer for 10 minutes.

Bake for about 10 minutes on a rack in the lower third of the preheated oven, until puffed and light brown in color. Remove from oven and set aside. The pastry is not fully cooked at this point.

Meanwhile, prepare the filling. Butter or spray a 9-by-13-inch baking pan.

In a large pot over medium heat, heat olive oil and add carrots, celery and onion. Saute until carrots begin to become tender, then add minced garlic and heat until garlic is fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add any frozen vegetables, the squash, cream of chicken soup, 1 cup chicken stock, butter, wine and the bay leaves. Stir to combine, bring to a simmer, and cook for 15 minutes.

Stir in the chicken and thyme. Season to taste with salt and pepper, then add cayenne and Tabasco. (Pot pie can be bland, and the squash adds sweetness,  so we add a little heat. Add in small increments and keep tasting.) Add chicken stock if mixture is too thick, taste once more and adjust seasoning. Remove pot from heat and let cool for 10 minutes.

Remove bay leaves, pour chicken mixture into the prepared pan and top with the partly baked pastry squares. Bake the casserole until the squares are golden brown and the squash mixture is bubbly, 10 to 15 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes and serve topped with fresh parsley.

Cook’s note: We used the entire package of puff pastry because everyone loves it, although one sheet will do and makes a better presentation. The squares mark natural serving portions, and allow steam to escape from the filling. Canned butternut squash might be hard to find, but it’s out there, and worth it for saving time. If you feel ambitious, roast and mash your own (about 4-cups worth). Don’t substitute canned pumpkin. To save even more time, use about 3 cups of frozen, diced veggies.


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