Tag Archives: baby carrots

Lighter Chicken and Leek Pot Pie

21 Jan
Lighter Chicken and Leek Pot Pie

Lighter Chicken and Leek Pot Pie

I’m not a big pastry eater, and even when it comes to homemade chicken or beef pot pie, I typically leave a lot of the soggy bottom crust behind. Then lo and behold, I came across this “skinnified” version of the dish! Yes!

Tons of flavor, not too many carbs, and nary a “cream of” can of soup in sight. My kind of meal! This dinner was inhaled by me and my family. I just loved the fact that I had the crispest of pastry set on top for a nice crunch with almost every bite. No soggy here! This recipe can be easily doubled, as you get two pie crust sheets in a box of refrigerated pie crust rolls.

The original recipe came from Cooking Light, and then foodie blogger Wendy Weekend Gourmet adapted it, and then I adapted it from her. Sharing the love!

And I decided to get Fancy-Schmancy with my lead-in photo and added a title to the pic. I just happened to have a lot of space at the top of the photo that I typically crop out, and have seen many bloggers add this, so what the heck. I hope you like both the recipe and the photo!

Lighter Chicken and Leek Pot Pie
Adapted from Cooking Light and Wendy Weekend Gourmet’s Skinny Chicken-Leek Pot Pie

Pot Pie Filling:
3/4 to 1 pound chicken breast meat, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 tablespoon poultry seasoning
Ground black pepper, to taste
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 cup diced baby carrots
1 cup diced potatoes, any kind
2 leeks, white and light green parts only, sliced
1 cup sliced mushrooms
3 tablespoons flour
2 cups chicken broth, homemade or low sodium
2 ounces Neufchâtel or low-fat cream cheese

Pie Crust Rounds:
1 packaged refrigerated pie crust sheet
Milk, for brushing pastry
1/2 teaspoon dried whole thyme

Chopped and Seasoned Chicken

Chopped and Seasoned Chicken

Mix the cut chicken with the poultry seasoning, black pepper, and a half tablespoon of oil and set aside.

Sliced Leeks and Baby Carrots

Sliced Leeks and Baby Carrots

Add the trimmed leeks to a bowl of cold water to rinse out any grit or sand, then drain.

Cooking the Carrots and Potatoes

Cooking the Carrots and Potatoes ~ A mushroom snuck in there off the cutting board and jumped right into the middle of my photo!

Add a tablespoon of the oil to a large skillet over medium heat. Add the carrots and potatoes and stir to evenly coat with the oil. Cook for 5 to 7 minutes, then cover and steam the mixture for about 10 more minutes, uncovering and stirring occasionally.

Cooking the Chicken and Veggies

Cooking the Chicken and Veggies

Add the chicken, leeks, and mushrooms and cook for another 10 minutes or so, also stirring occasionally.

Meanwhile, combine the cream cheese and chicken broth in a large measuring cup and microwave for 2 minutes. After, whisk vigorously until the cream cheese is completely combined with the broth and set aside.

Step away for a second and preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

When the chicken is fairly cooked through, evenly sprinkle the flour over it all. Stir well to combine and cook for 1 to 2 minutes, stirring constantly.

Reducing the Delicious Cream Cheese Sauce

Reducing the Delicious Cream Cheese Sauce

Pour the hot cream cheese/broth mixture into the pan with the chicken and veggies and stir well to combine with everything else until smooth. Reduce heat to low, then cover and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Meanwhile (again), line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and unroll the refrigerated pie crust onto it. Use a small ramekin (or other) bowl as a guide to cut four pie crusts.

Cutting the Pie Crust Dough

Cutting the Pie Crust Dough

Brush each round with milk, then sprinkle with the thyme.

Pie Crust Circles Ready to Bake

Pie Crust Circles Ready to Bake

Place in oven and bake until golden brown, about 10 to 12 minutes, then remove. By now your pot pie filling should be done.

To serve, divide the pot pie filling into bowls or ramekins and top with one of the crispy pie crust rounds. Serve and enjoy a bowl of yumminess!

Download and Print this Recipe

Download and Print this Yummy Recipe!

Coq au Vin (Chicken in Wine)

22 Feb
Coq au Vin

Coq au Vin (Chicken in Wine)

After feeding our foreign exchange student a healthy (or unhealthy you might say) dose of American food, I decided to surprise her one night with a traditional French dish. She walked into the kitchen and I motioned her over to the crock pot. I lifted the lid and said, “Tah Da! I made you Coq au Vin!” She had a very puzzled look on her face. I said it again nice and slow, like this: “COKE UHH VEEEEEN.” Blank look. “You know, chicken in wine!”

“Ohhhh, yes, yes. It’s Coh ah Vah,” she replied. There is barely a hint of the k and n sound, but I could not seem to quite get that part right and we had a few giggles at my poor attempts. So after I thoroughly corrupted the French pronunciation, I was hoping I didn’t do the same to the meal. For one, I couldn’t find a true Burgundy wine at the store, so settled on a Pinot Noir. I also knew my daughter wouldn’t eat the mushrooms in it, so added some baby carrots. I did, however, ask Caroline what the French typically served the dish over — potatoes or noodles? She said potatoes, so then I asked her if they were boiled or mashed? Another puzzled look from her then had me pantomiming round circles for boiled and banging my fist on the table to simulate mashing. Ahh, the second one, mashed potatoes!

Browning the Chicken

Browning the Chicken

After her bowl was filled twice and mopped dry with thick slices of French bread, I can say that the meal was a success! This dish is typically made with skin-on chicken thighs and legs, but all I had were large, boneless, skinless chicken breasts. So I lopped them in half, and hoped they wouldn’t come out too dry. I think using a slow cooker helped retain some of the juiciness but I think next time I would cook them only about 3 hours on high instead of 4 hours. But I was very satisfied with the results, and now I know how to properly pronounce this lovely meal even if I can’t actually say it right.

Mushrooms and Pearl Onions

Mushrooms and Pearl Onions

Coq au Vin (Chicken in Wine)

4 slices of bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 1/2 to 3 pounds chicken, skin on or skinless
1/4 cup flour, divided
Ground black pepper, to taste
Mrs. Dash or salt, to taste
1 tablespoon vegetable or olive oil
8 ounces frozen pearl onions, thawed
8 ounces small button mushrooms
2 cups whole baby carrots
1 1/2 cups red wine
1/2 cup homemade or low-sodium chicken broth
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 cloves garlic, crushed and roughly chopped
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
2 bay leaves
Fresh parsley, chopped
Mashed potatoes and French bread, for serving

Vegetable Medley

Vegetable Medley

Cook the bacon in a large skillet, remove from heat, and drain bacon on paper towels. Leave about 2 tablespoons of the bacon grease in the skillet, or if you used lean bacon then add some vegetable oil to make up for it. Season the chicken with pepper and Mrs. Dash or salt, to taste. Dust the chicken pieces with 1/8 cup flour, reserving the rest, and add the chicken to the skillet over medium high heat. Brown the chicken for several minutes on each side. Remove and set aside on a plate.

Chicken Vegetables and Bacon

Chicken, Vegetables, and Bacon

Add the tablespoon of oil to the skillet over medium heat, stir in the rest of the flour, then add in the pearl onions and mushrooms. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Transfer the mixture to the slow cooker, add the baby carrots, then return skillet to heat. Deglaze the pan with the wine and chicken broth, scraping up all the yummy brown bits.

Wine Mixture

Wine Mixture

Whisk in the tomato paste, garlic, thyme, oregano, and bay leaves. Cook and stir for about 5 more minutes and turn off heat. Place the chicken over the vegetables in the crock pot, add the bacon on top, then pour the wine mixture over all. Cover and cook on high for 3 to 4 hours, or low 6 to 8 hours.

Coq au Vin Ready to Cook

Coq au Vin Ready to Cook

Make your mashed potatoes in the last half hour or so of cooking and keep over low heat until ready to serve. Spoon mashed potatoes into bowls, top with the chicken and vegetables plus juices, and sprinkle with fresh chopped parsley. Have lots of thick-sliced French bread for sopping up all the savory juices. Enjoy!

Oh and I almost forgot. The wonderful organization that brought Caroline and my family together are now looking for more hosting families for this spring. Please, if you have any doubt about how wonderful an experience hosting is, go to the Andeo website and learn how you can sign up to host a student. You will not regret the experience! Here is a link to their website: www.andeo.org.

Coq au Vin

Coq au Vin (Chicken in Wine)

Download and Print this Recipe

Download and Print this Yummy Recipe!

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