As the polar vortex slowly but surely encroaches upon our little coastal town, I've got my mind on my favorite Pottery Barn blanket and a warm, buttery chicken pot pie.
I was raised in a house divided. My sister, Laura, insisted her chicken pot pie be topped with a flaky puff pastry. Me? I'm all about a fluffy, cheesy biscuit. The type that slowly soaks up the savory pie filling and adds an extra layer of richness.
This is a special recipe that my crafty mother put together to accommodate my biscuit-related demands. She uses my grandmother's recipe for cheddar biscuits atop a thick, creamy filling and the combination is unbeatable.
I used to bake the biscuits directly on top of the pie filling, but I find that it's hard to tell when the biscuits are done because they absorb so much moisture as they bake. Partially pre-baking them is the perfect solution.
* 2 c. flour
* 1 tbsp. baking powder
* 1 tsp. salt
* 1 c. shredded cheddar cheese
* 4 tbsp. shortening (crisco)
* 1 c. cold milk
* 1 tbsp. butter, melted
* 2 c. cooked chicken (I use a rotisserie chicken), cut into chunks
* 2 c. chicken stock
* 1 c. chopped carrots
* 1 small yellow onion (or 1-1.5 c.), chopped
* 3 tbsp. butter
* 3 tbsp. flour
* 3/4 c. frozen peas
* 1/2 c. heavy cream
* salt, pepper
Preheat the oven to 375. Spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray; set aside. To prepare the biscuits, combine flour, baking powder, salt and shredded cheese in a bowl. Use a fork or pastry cutter to cut in the shortening until you have small, course crumbs the size of peas. Slowly add in the milk and stir with a wooden spoon until the dough comes together. Lightly flour your hands and form the dough into 6 biscuits. Bake for 15 minutes while you prepare the filling.
Add 1 tbsp. butter to a large saute pan over medium heat. Add the carrots, cover, and cook 5 minutes or until the carrots are mostly tender. Add an additional tablespoon of butter along with the onions and saute, uncovered, until the onions are translucent (5 more minutes). Add the remaining tablespoon of butter to the pan, then stir in flour. Cook the flour, stirring constantly, for 1 minute or so. Increase the heat to medium high and add the chicken stock to the pan, bringing the mixture to a boil. When the filling has thickened (2-3 minutes later), add the chicken, peas (directly from the freezer is fine), and heavy cream. Season generously with salt and pepper.
Brush the tops of the biscuits with melted butter. Place the biscuits on top of the filling and return the pan to the oven for 8 minutes. I used my cast iron enamel skillet, which is ovenproof, but if yours is not, transfer the filling to a baking dish and top with biscuits. Serve immediately. Enjoy!