Slow-Cooked Supper: The Comfort Food Edition

January 19, 2012 at 8:19 pm Leave a comment

Based on the recipe “Creamy Chicken and Mushroom Potpie” in the Feb 2012 Real Simple; I’ll type in their original, with my changes in parentheses and notes.

8 oz cremini mushrooms, stems trimmed and halved if large (I used all the mushrooms delivered to me this week in my produce box , leaving the stems on because they were small and tight and quartering them)
4 carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces (I used three big handfuls of organic baby carrots and just chunked them in whole)
1 medium onion, chopped (we don’t do onions at our house, so I left this out)
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 sprigs fresh thyme (I used several shakes of the dried thyme I keep on hand for red beans, plus a couple of shakes of dried marjoram)
1 bay leaf (two small ones)
1-1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs, about 8 (I used a little over 2 pounds, about 11, because that’s how the packaging of the organic boneless skinless chicken thighs from Costco worked out)
salt and black pepper
1 sheet puff pastry (half a 17.3oz package), thawed
1 c frozen peas (I don’t do peas, so I left these out)
1 c frozen green beans (I really don’t do green beans, so these would never be anywhere in my house to begin with)
1/3 c heavy cream (I actually had some left in my fridge from the holidays, but it had crossed over to the dark side and I just used a couple  glugs of half-and-half)

1. In a 4- to 6-quart slow cooker, mix together mushrooms, carrots, onion (X), flour, thyme, bay leaf, and 1/2 c water. Place chicken pieces on top of this; season with salt and pepper.

2. Cover and cook until chicken and veg are tender; 7 – 8 hours on low, or 4 -5 hours on high (my slow cooker just needed 6 hours on low, so pay attention to what yours does).

3. Thirty minutes before serving (whatever), heat oven to 425. Using a 4.5″ cutter or large glass, cut pastry into 4 circles. (I used my giant fleur-de-lis cookie cutters, and then just had fun with twisting up scraps in little bits and shapes. I can imagine using various cutters at various times.) Place on a baking sheet and bake til golden, 8 to 10 minutes (mine took 8).

4. Ten minutes before serving, add peas, green beans, cream, and a little salt to the chicken mixture (you’ll have to take this on faith, as what I did was curse the very idea of peas and green beans once again as I glugged in the half and half); stir to combine. Cover and cook on high or low until heated through (I found that it was heated through as quickly as I stirred it), 5 to 10 minutes. To serve, place chicken mixture in bowls and top with pastry rounds (shapes).

It was TASTY. Comfort food at its finest. I toyed with the idea of sprinkling a little pecorino over the pastry before baking to make cheesy pastry, and still might do that next time. M devoured it and said “Keep this recipe.” I will say, I do like my slow cooker. Particularly when our dinnertime comes right after all the time we spend feeding/bathing/nursing/putting to bed our boy. Mama don’t like eight p.m. dinners.

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The Slow-Cooker As Mama’s Best Friend

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Some of my cookbooks

In no order except for how they appear in my LibraryThing cookbook catalog: True Women Cookbook: Original Antique Recipes, Photographs, & Family Folklore, Janice Woods Windle (1997) * Made in Texas; H-E-B's 100th Anniversary Cookbook (2005) * The Texas Cowboy Cookbook: A History in Recipes and Photos, Robb Walsh (2007) * The Silver Palate Cookbook, Julee Rosso, Sheila Lukins (1982) * In the Land of Cocktails: Recipes and Adventures from the Cocktail Chicks, Ti Adelaide Martin & Lally Brennan (2007) * Braise: A Journey Through International Cuisine, Daniel Boulud (2006) * Moosewood Cookbook : Recipes from Moosewood Restaurant, Mollie Katzen (1977) * Crescent City Cooking: Unforgettable Recipes from Susan Spicer's New Orleans, Susan Spicer (2007) * Saveur Cooks Authentic American: By the Editors of Saveur Magazine, ed. Colman Andrews (1998)

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