A chill in the air. The scent of dried leaves and burning firewood. Early sunsets and cozy sweaters. Is it just me or do the season’s most charming attributes have a way of creating the perfect backdrop for belly-warming comfort food? (It might just be me because I happen to almost always be thinking about food, but I’ll assume that since you’re a Kendall-Jackson fan we’re of a similar mindset.)
Today, I want to talk about what I believe to be the ultimate comfort food. No, it’s not macaroni and cheese or a rich beef stew. It’s the humble yet mind-blowingly delicious mini chicken pot pies with rosemary crust.
Chances are, you’re skeptical. You may be familiar with the frozen variety. I, too, ate my fair share of “TV dinner” pot pies as a kid. You know the ones — cardboard-like pastry, ho-hum, greyish tinted filling. These are not those pot pies.
In fact, I’m willing to bet that these mini chicken pot pies with rosemary crust won’t just change your mind about pot pies, they may be the best thing you eat all winter. They’re that good. And as it turns out, they’re pretty uncomplicated to make homemade as well.
These miniature versions doesn’t stray far from the classic. The filling is made from basic, high-quality ingredients — onion, garlic, carrots, and celery are sauteed and slowly softened, melting together to develop a hearty, slow-cooked flavor. Herbs, peas and mushrooms are added for flavor and texture and then the whole mixture is slowly simmered with chicken broth and milk until thick and delicious, and then divided between ramekins so each person at the dinner table receives their own perfectly portioned pie.
What really sets this recipe apart is the crust. If you’ve never had buttermilk pie crust, prepare to fall in love. Buttermilk adds a rich flakiness and golden brown exterior to a baked pie crust that water versions can’t compete with. In this case, I’ve steeped rosemary in the buttermilk overnight in order to infuse its woodsy, earthy flavor right into the crust, elevating these pot pies just enough to make them special without feeling overly fussy. The result is magic and I truly hope you’ll give homemade buttermilk pie crust a try, but if you’re not up for making your own you could simply use a round of store-bought pie dough instead.
One thing you can’t shortcut? The wine. Cozy food is best served alongside an equally delicious and comforting glass of wine and while I’ve got you covered on the food side of things, Kendall-Jackson’s bringing the wine. In this case, earthy rosemary and flakey, golden crust pair beautifully with Kendall-Jackson Grand Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon. Rich and berry-forward with hints of mocha and spice, it’s a balanced wine that pairs perfectly with cold-weather comfort food. Enjoy!
Mini Chicken Pot Pies + Rosemary Crust
For the pie crust:
- ¼ cup + 1 tablespoon buttermilk
- 1 teaspoon roughly chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cold and cut into tablespoon pieces
For the pot pie filling:
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- ½ medium sweet onion, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- 2 medium carrots, chopped
- 2 stalks celery, chopped
- ½ cup chopped bella mushrooms
- 4 sprigs thyme, leaves only
- 1 teaspoon chopped rosemary
- 1 cup frozen peas
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 3 cups chicken broth
- ¼ cup milk
- 2 cups shredded rotisserie chicken
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Egg wash (1 egg whisked with a splash of water)
- Pair with a bottle of Kendall-Jackson Grand Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon.
To make the pie dough:
- Warm the buttermilk in a small saucepan. Add the rosemary then remove from heat. Pour into a bowl and refrigerate until cold. Overnight works best.
- When ready to prepare the pie, strain the rosemary pieces out of the buttermilk, set the buttermilk aside.
- Add the flour and salt to the bowl of a food processor. Pulse to combine. Add the butter pieces and pulse 10-12 times, or until there are some pieces of butter about the size of a pea, some smaller.
- Add four tablespoons of infused buttermilk, and pulse until the mixture looks like thick, grainy sand and when pinched between your fingers, the dough sticks together. Add more buttermilk if needed, but you should not need more than 5 tablespoons. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
For the pot pie filling:
- While the dough is chilling, prepare the filling. Add the oil to a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions, garlic, carrot and celery. Cook until the vegetables begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the herbs and mushrooms and cook for another 2-3 minutes.
- Add the flour and whisk constantly until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Add the peas, chicken broth and milk and bring to a simmer. Cook for 10-15 minutes or until mixture starts to thicken. Stir in the chicken and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste then remove from heat and divide between 6-8 ramekins, filling to the top. If you’re only preparing 6 ramekins, there will be leftover filling.
- Preheat the oven to 400F and place filled ramekins on a baking sheet.
- Roll out the pie dough on a well-floured surface to about ⅛-inch thickness. Cut out circles that are slightly larger than the ramekins (use a ramekin or a large water glass to measure). Top each ramekin with a disc of dough and press around the sides of the ramekin to seal. Brush with egg wash and cut slits into the top of each disc to allow steam to vent.
- Optional: Roll out leftover dough and cut out leaf or seasonal shapes. Decorate the top of each pot pie with cut outs and brush with egg wash.
- Bake the pot pies for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and let cool for 10-15 minutes then serve with a glass of Kendall-Jackson Grand Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon.
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