Friday, April 3, 2009

Our Chicken Pot Pie Belongs in the Guggenheim

I should have known after the incredible success of our first cooking adventure that it was too good to be true. Nevertheless, when Adi and I had our second cooking night two weeks ago, I was again expecting perfection.

Oh how little I have learned.

For our next cooking night, Adrianna and I made chicken pot pie. The recipe suggested using pre-made pie crust, and though we originally thought we'd just make our own, by the time we go to the day of, we were both so tired that we just figured we'd go buy some. 

So we bought a box of Tenderflake ready-made pie crust, and took it home, ready to try our culinary skills again and prove how naturally awesome we are. Then we opened the box of pie crust.

First of all, it was frozen, second, it was in squares. Nice little cubes about the size of your palm. We picked up these cubes and turned them this way and that wondering what to do with them. It was a square. Wasn't it supposed to be in sheets? Or something? That's the way I'd always seen this ready-made stuff. The recipe we were using suggested using a ready-made lattice top and baking it before cooking it on the pie. What were we to do with ready-made cubes?

Looking back, it sounds even more stupid, but after much deliberation, we decided we'd cut up the cubes and arrange the strips in a lattice top. Adi got the lovely job of arranging the short little strips of  pastry while I made the filling. Our lattice didn't look like a lattice, but the pieces were so short we figured it wasn't worth the effort to do a real one.

Then we poured the filling into the casserole dish and waited for the top to finish baking. Everything was still going smoothly, and we'd have a lovely chicken pie like the one in the picture, right?



First of all, that silly pastry dough wouldn't cook, it just got kind of oily and gross looking. Second of all, the dough was of course quite flaky, and the different layers just sort of spread out while it was cooking. We took it out of the oven and tried to arrange it on our pie, but it was just a mishmash of flaky dough thrown on top of chicken and carrots.

When completed, our chicken pot pie in no way resembled the picturesque pie in the cookbook, but some bizarre form of modern art, like you'd see at the Guggenheim.

Only then did we looked at the Tenderflake box, and saw the instructions: "Roll out defrosted pastry dough before cooking."

I don't know if any other cooks out there are as stupid as me, but when you're making chicken pot pie, just make your own dough. If you're like me, it's easier.


isaacsmum said...

Elena, by the looks of your pie and the sound of your desciption of the pastry, I'm pretty sure you had puff pastry (think coissants, danishes) instead of pie crust. I'd have to agree though that pie crust is just as easy to make as buy though!

reddy said...

Well that would explain why it tasted so weird. It wasn't really a pie, it was more soupy chicken stuff with a side of pastry sticks.

Katey said...

Try Chicken Cobbler with a biscuit crust. t's yummy, and no hassle with pir crust. If you want the recipe, call me.

Anonymous said...