…or how to make yourself feel better with food after a hard day. No specifics necessary, but I felt the need to make something that would soothe our souls tonight. Why is it that we always seem to harken back to a favorite childhood dish when we feel this way? Macaroni and cheese is high on the list when I’m on a quest for an old fashioned supper, but truth be told, I ate pasta three out of the last four nights. My mind was made up-it had to be chicken pot pie.
The chicken pot pie of my childhood was the frozen variety. I don’t remember my mother (who is a wonderful cook) ever making this dish from scratch. It didn’t really matter because I loved my little individual Swanson pot pie-especially the crust. I would have been happy to have a bowl of crust and the creamy sauce!
I’ve made my version of chicken pot pie for years and initially I did a very easy version using frozen puff pastry for the topping. That is still great, but I’ve decided I prefer using my pie crust dough that I normally have stashed away in the freezer. Even if you don’t have a crust in the freezer, the recipe for this pie dough is simple and pretty much foolproof.
Never-Fail Pie Crust
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1-3/4 cup solid vegetable shortening
1 teaspoon cider vinegar
1/2 cup cold water
In a larger mixer bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Add the shortening and beat until the mixture is crumbly, about 2 minutes. In a small bowl beat the egg and add the water and the vinegar. Pour over the flour and shortening mixture and beat until well incorporated, about 1 minute. Form the dough into 4 disks, wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
Follow directions for whatever pie you are making. I like to roll the dough between two pieces of parchment paper to about 1/8″ thick and then transport to pie dish. If the dough rips, just press it together with your fingers. For my chicken pot pie, I leave out the sugar. I fill a round oven proof dish with my chicken/vegetable mixture and top with a crust (I don’t do a crust on the bottom).