We caved and turned on our furnace this week. It was 61 degrees in our house when I got home from work one evening, and I just couldn't wait any longer. If it weren't for the little ones, I probably would have held out, but alas. I have tiny fingers and toes to protect.
If you're a furnace hold-out (or even if you, too, have caved and turned it on), these mini pot pies are the perfect thing to warm up your kitchen, and your soul. I firmly believe that anything in mini form just tastes better, I think because the cuteness factor just takes it over the top. These little pot pies are loaded with chicken, broccoli, and cheddar cheese, so they're just as delicious as they are adorable.
There is a bit of assembly involved in these, but they're still very simple to make. The hardest part was keeping myself from eating all of the filling before I put it inside the pie crusts! And if you don't have round cookie cutters, don't stress about it; just use the rims of two different-sized drinking glasses (which is what I did -- this is where having children comes in handy, since their cups are much smaller). My boys went nuts for these, which is another thing that's great about mini food: It's so fun for kids to eat. Next time I make these, I'll double the batch so I can freeze half of them for a later meal. I bet they'll freeze beautifully...much like I was, before I turned on the furnace. ;)
Individual Chicken Broccoli Cheddar Pot Pies
adapted from Food Network
2 tablespoons butter
2 cloves minced garlic
2 tablespoons flour
3/4 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
1/4 cup grated cheddar cheese
3/4 cup cooked, chopped chicken breast
1 cup broccoli florets, steamed
All-purpose flour for dusting
2 10-inch round prepared pie crusts
1 egg, beaten
1. Place an oven rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Spray a 12-count mini-muffin pan with vegetable oil cooking spray. Set aside.
2. For the pot pie filling: Melt the butter in a 1-quart saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the garlic; cook and stir for 30 seconds. Add the flour and whisk until smooth, 1 to 2 minutes. Gradually add the milk, whisking constantly to prevent lumps. Simmer over medium-low heat, whisking constantly, until the sauce is thick and smooth, about 6 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the salt, pepper, cheddar, chicken and broccoli.
3. For assembly: On a lightly-floured work surface, roll out the dough 1/8-inch thick. Using a 3-inch round cookie cutter, cut out 12 pieces of dough. Using a 2-inch round cookie cutter, cut out another 12 pieces of dough. Press the large rounds of dough into the bottom of the prepared pan. Spoon the sauce into the pastry.
4. Combine the egg and 1 teaspoon water in a small bowl, using a fork. Brush the edges of the pastry with the egg mixture and place the remaining pieces of dough on top. Lightly press the edges of the dough together to seal. Press around the edges of the pies using the tines of a fork. Brush the tops of each pie with the beaten egg. Cut a 1/2-inch-long slit into the top of the pies using a paring knife.
5. Bake until the tops are golden and the filling is bubbling, 15 to 18 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes and serve.