Ad Hoc at Home: Chicken Pot Pie

Welcome back! It’s been a while. Hopefully updates will be coming a little more often than they have been.  In a previous post I floated the idea of picking a cookbook and cooking my way through it.  I was thinking about doing the Les Halles Cookbook or Momofuku.  I’ve done some recipes from these books, but haven’t felt there was enough to post on.  After thinking about it a bit more, I don’t think I’m going to pick just one book.  I have several cookbooks that have recipes that I really want to try.  So I’m just going to cook the recipes that I want and post about them here.  You can follow along if you want and maybe eventually I’ll make it through some of my books.  Hopefully this will also give you an idea of what’s in each of these books in case you are considering buying any of them.

So the first recipe that I’ll post about is the chicken pot pie from the Ad Hoc at Home cookbook by Thomas Keller.  Thomas Keller is known for his high-end restaurants, The French Laundry and Per Se, which are consistently ranked near the top n the country.  Ad Hoc originally started as a temporary restaurant, but was so popular that it has stayed open since.   Ad Hoc is more casual and the food is served family style.

I started with the pot pie because it was something I grew up eating.  We would buy the individual pot pies from the freezer section, pop them in the oven, and enjoy.  This recipe is a little more involved than that.  I won’t post the actual recipe, but I’ll talk about some of the steps along the way.  A couple of days before, I had roasted a chicken according to the method Mr. Keller demonstrated on No Reservations.  No basting, no fat,nothing inside.  Just truss the chicken, season with salt and pepper and roast.  Easy as that.

The day of the pot pie, I started with the pie crust.  I’d never made pie crust before, so I thought this turned out fairly well.  Just flour, salt, butter and water.  Just make sure everything stays cold.  While the crust was chilling in the fridge, I got to work on the vegetables.  This pie had potatoes, carrots, pearl onions, and celery.  In the book all the vegetables are cooked separately, but I just combined them all in one pot.  Next is the bechamel, which is a classic French white sauce.  Make a roux, add some milk, and cook it until it thickens.  When it was done, I seasoned it with salt, pepper, and cayenne.

After all that, you’re finally ready to put the pie together.  Roll out the crust, add the vegetables and chicken, pour on the bechamel, and add the top crust.  After it bakes and rests, all you have to  do is enjoy it.

I’m going to work on updating more regularly.  More cookbook posts, some creations of my own, and other random things I feel like posting about.  See you soon.

Edit: By the way, thanks to my sister for buying me the book.  The French Laundry, Bouchon, Momofuku, Les Halles, and Live to Cook to come in the future.

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