My grandmother was a fantastic cook and I learned a lot by spending time with her in the kitchen. My absolute favorite thing she made was this Chicken Pie – mostly because she didn’t put vegetables in it. Whenever she’d ask what I wanted her to make when we went down for a visit, my answer was always “Chicken Pie.” She doesn’t cook anymore for various reasons but whenever I make this, I’m instantly transported to Warner Robins in the mid-nineties.
Grandmother had me snookered because I always thought this was super complicated and took days to make. I was absolutely shocked when I made it the first time and it was quick and easy to do. Granted, she made her own pie dough and roasted the chicken herself and I don’t but still – it’s pretty easy to make. In fact, after a quick trip to the grocery store to get a rotisserie chicken and some refrigerated pie dough, you can have this meal ready for the oven in about 15 minutes.
- 1 Tbs Olive Oil
- 1 Medium Onion, Diced
- 1 Clove Garlic, Minced
- ⅓ Cup Butter
- ⅓ Cup Flour
- ⅔ Cup Chicken Stock
- 1⅓ Cup Milk
- 1 ½ tsp Kosher Salt
- 1 tsp Black Pepper
- Meat of 1 Whole Chicken, Cooked and Shredded (I generally buy a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store)
- 2 Refrigerated Pie Crusts, at Room Temperature
- 1 Egg and a Splash of Water
- Preheat the oven to 375°
- Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add the onions and garlic and a pinch of salt and pepper and sauté until they are translucent – about 5 minutes.
- Add the butter to the pan. Once it melts, whisk in the flour and keep it moving for a few minutes until it gets smooth and the raw flour taste cooks out – about 2 to 3 minutes. Make sure you keep it moving!
- Wisk in the liquid, salt and pepper – making sure you get all of the lumps out. Switch from a whisk to a spatula or wooden spoon and bring it to a simmer – stirring frequently. As the liquid heats, it will thicken and coat the back of a spoon. When this happens, remove it from the heat – do not let it simmer for more than a couple of seconds.
- In a large bowl combine the gravy you just made and the shredded chicken. Taste the filling and add more salt and pepper if needed.
- Spray an 8” round deep casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray.
- Unroll one of the pie crusts and place it in dish so that it covers the bottom and the sides of the casserole. It should overhang the top.
- Add the filling to the pie and place the other crust on top. Trim off any excess dough, crimp the two crusts together, and poke a couple of holes in the top with a knife to let steam escape.
- Make an egg wash by mixing the egg and water in a small bowl and brush it over the top of the pie. You won’t use it all.
- Bake in a 375° oven for 30 – 45 minutes until the pie is golden brown on the top.
- Let the pie sit out of the oven for 10 – 15 minutes before serving so that the filling can thicken up.
Purchase a pre-cooked chicken and refrigerated pie dough for this recipe and you’ll save a whole lot of time. Your grocery store probably sells whole cooked chickens in the prepared foods section and the pie dough in the refrigerated section (not the freezer) is as good as any pie dough I’ve ever made.
This dish was made for the freezer and is great for a housewarming or new baby meal! All you have to do is assemble the pie in a round foil casserole pan (or square pan), wrap in aluminum foil and freeze. Cook from frozen covered at 375° for 30 minutes, uncover and cook for another 30 minutes until golden brown and heated through.
A béchamel sauce is one of the mother sauces in French cuisine and is used to make a lot of other fancy sauces. In southern cuisine, béchamel is called gravy and is made with sausage grease and ladled over biscuits. Take that, France.