Table for One is a column by Senior Editor Eric Kim, who loves cooking for himself—and only himself—and seeks to celebrate the beauty of solitude in its many forms.
This easy chicken pot pie recipe first started out in a six-ounce ramekin. It was cute and pixie but, like my appetite for solitude, left me hungry for more.
Then it grew into an oven-safe cereal bowl (a dingy Bed Bath & Beyond purchase I made when I first moved to New York City 10 years ago). But that was too deep, so the filling didn't reduce enough as it baked. Plus, it was still a measly amount of food, especially for supper.
Finally, after a few more tries in a shallower baking dish, I sent the finished recipe off to our test kitchen for photographing. Food stylist and cookbook writer Samantha Seneviratne—who's notoriously great at troubleshooting serving sizes—suggested to me that day, "I think you should double this."
Double what I've already doubled? I thought.
But she was right. The recipe had to be doubled in order to feel substantial enough as a meal on its own.
Even more, we chatted with our prop stylist Amanda Widis about the right pan for the job—and she picked out a gorgeous eight-inch cast-iron skillet. I thought: Great. I can make the filling, top it with pastry, and bake it all in one pan. I can even eat out of the same vessel, which means fewer dishes.
My version of chicken pot pie takes advantage of spring radishes and peas (albeit frozen peas, but let's be real: Those taste better than fresh 90 percent of the time, no?). I love the way the two colors bounce off each other, the bright green and electric pink, like Kermit and Miss Piggy.
There's something so underrated about cooked radishes. Korean cuisine relies on radishes for their raw crunch, but also for their cooked, aromatic softness. Once stewed or roasted or baked, radishes lose their bitter edge and gain an immeasurable sweetness.
Mostly, this chicken pot pie recipe is a reminder that comfort food doesn't have to mean heavy. Bright vegetables and a light Thai curry and coconut chicken filling takes the winter favorite and makes it fit for these warm and rainy days of spring. In the same way that I adore Better Than Bouillon chicken concentrate, store-bought red curry paste is a great shortcut for lazy weekends in, when you're looking for maximal flavor (here in the form of Thai red chiles, garlic, and lemongrass) but with minimal effort.
Speaking of minimal effort, the pie crust is homemade, with the idea in mind that making one single portion of dough feels somehow more manageable than a large one. Relaxing even, at least for me. (But hey, I won't be mad if you decide to use store-bought puff pastry; that stuff is delicious, too.)
Oh, and the best part? Just one pan to clean.