Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Mission: Chicken Pie (now, with 20% more foie gras!)

To go along with the yummy sauce gribiche, this week we made PDC Chicken Pie. We meezed it up good.

Chicken Pie Mis en Place

Knowing dinner was going to be on a Friday night after a long work week, we made the pie crust ahead of time so it would be all set when it was time to ROLL.

We weighed the flour. (PS - Michael Ruhlman has requested your comments about weighing via his blog . Go forth and comment!)

A touch of flour

And we added in some cold butter...

A knob of butter

All mixed up nice in the food processor...

Make some dough!

And rolled into a log, and put in the fridge for a few hours...

Prior to a day in the fridge

We added the green beans to the carrots, onions, and celeriac (celery root) and chicken (which had been cooked in the same pan and deglazed with some white wine).

Pie Stuffing just about ready
Note from wife: Celeriac was a fantabulous food-piphany for me! Not a fan of the texture of proper celery in hot preparations (hot, watery, stringy things... not so much), I've shied away from it, straining it out at the end before serving. But I have always liked the taste. (And I love me some raw celery with cream cheese and paprika. Hello? Who doesn't?!) Needless to say, the introduction to celeriac changed everything! It's got all the taste of celery, none of the watery boringness I was trying to avoid. Good taste and good texture. EVERYONE WINS! (OK, just I win, but still. That counts for something. THANK YOU, CELERIAC!)
After the celery after-party was celebrated inside aforementioned homemade pie dough.

Dough into pie pan

Every pie pan got its share...

Pies ready for lids

Then every pie got its lid... And a rub down with egg yolk!

Pies with yolk wash

Mmmm... and they baked up nice and toasty. But wait! There's more!!!!

Pies out of the oven

Per an optional suggestion in The Album (which is basically what they do in the restaurant), we added a mind-blowing foie gras sauce, using the leftover foie gras fat from the foie gras burger, an egg yolk, cream, and some veal demi-glace.

Chicken pie with foie gras sauce

So, the taste? Well, the addition of the sauce was... not a mistake. In fact: Oh.ma.gaw. It went from "mmm, this is a delicious, nice, fresh, homemade chicken pot pie" to "Agurlglurlrugg" (the sound of drooling, with eyes rolled into the back of the head), quickly followed by "AND furthermore (as dinner companion gets fork perilously close to aforementioned foie sauce), if you get your fork any nearer to my luscious foie covered chicken pie, I you make sure that you will seriously regret it. FOREVER. My pie! MY PIE!" Violence was avoided, but daaaaaaamn, was that chicken pie with foie gras sauce good!

Leaving the sauce aside for a moment, this dish did have a nicely familiar feeling to it - and while we were both really pleased with the results of the addition of cerleriac, and happy about the substitution of string beans for the more traditional peas in this kind of dish, it brought us both back, remembering pot pies we've had in the past. Which is all to say that this dish didn't expand our palates in major, significant ways - but it did give us a little more of the depth that we're doing this whole project for.

Note to selves:
FOIE GRAS SAUCE ON EVERYTHING! ALWAYS! We're not sure we made the point clearly enough above, but this really made a positive impact on the dish, and we recommend it for anyone considering the option.

Time, mis to eat: About six hours, four of which were spent chilling the pie dough.

Next up: Mother's Day come early this year as we prepare us some Foie Gras Tart (#9)

Blast from the past: First time here? Check out why we're doing this from his and her perspective.

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