Make Ahead

Chicken Pot Pie Provencal

October 15, 2009
Author Notes

This recipe has at it’s core, an adaptation of Jacques Pepin’s recipe for Poached Chicken (“Cooking at Home with Julia Child”), but whereas Jacques serves his chicken and veggies over a bed of rice, I have used his dish as a launching point for this “Chicken Pot Pie Provencal”. In addition to the customary peas and carrots, this version includes fennel, fingerling potatoes, haricot verts, oven roasted tomatoes, sauteed mushrooms with mustard seeds, and a mustard velouté enhanced with fresh tarragon and thyme.
Oui, Chef

  • Serves 8
  • Jacques's Poached Chicken
  • 4 pounds roasting chicken
  • 6 carrots, ends trimmed, peeled
  • 4 celery stalks, ends trimmed
  • 1 leek, white and light green parts only
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 2 sprigs tarragon
  • 3 sprigs thyme
  • fronds from a large fennel bulb
  • 10 ounces pearl onions, peeled
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 12 black peppercorns
  • Chicken Pot Pie Provencal (recipe will make two 9” round by 3” deep pies, each will serve 4-6 people) If making only one pot pie, freeze 1 pastry disc and half of the filling for later use.
  • 3 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 sticks plus 5 tablespoons cold, unsalted butter, cut into 1” pieces.
  • 2/3 cup ice water
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • reserved chicken
  • reserved carrots
  • reserved pearl onions
  • 10 fingerling potatoes
  • 1 large fennel bulb, quartered and roasted
  • 10 ounces button mushrooms, thickly sliced and sauteed
  • 1/2 pound haricot verts, topped and tailed, blanched, refreshed, and chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen green peas, thawed
  • 1/4 cup diced oven roasted tomatoes (store bought)
  • 1 tablespoon brown mustard seeds
  • 1/4 cup vermouth
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 8 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup creme fraiche
  • 4 tablespoons dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped tarragon
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped thyme
  • 1 egg, whisked for egg wash
  • salt and pepper
In This Recipe
  1. Jacques's Poached Chicken
  2. Place chicken in a large stockpot.
  3. Tie whole carrots, leek, celery, and fennel fronds into a bundle and add to the pot with the chicken. Tie tarragon and thyme together and add to the pot. Toss in the peppercorns and the pearl onions, white wine, and 1 tablespoon of salt. Fill with water to just cover the chicken, put over a high heat and bring to a boil.
  4. Once boiling, lower the heat to maintain a gentle boil for 20 minutes. Raise the heat back to high, to again achieve a rapid boil, turn off the heat, cover and let sit for 1 hour.
  5. Remove chicken from the pot and set aside to cool. Remove the bundle of vegetables, discard the fennel fronds and leek, and cut the carrots and celery on the bias into bite-sized pieces, reserve.
  6. Skin the chicken and pull all the meat from the bones, tearing into bite-sized pieces, reserve.
  7. Strain the cooking liquid through a fine meshed strainer into a clean saucepan, skim any fat from the top and set over medium high heat to reduce to 4 cups of concentrated stock, reserve.
  1. Chicken Pot Pie Provencal (recipe will make two 9” round by 3” deep pies, each will serve 4-6 people) If making only one pot pie, freeze 1 pastry disc and half of the filling for later use.
  2. for the pastry crust - Place the flour into a bowl of a food processor, toss the butter on top, and pulse in short bursts until the butter is reduced to pea sized pieces. Add the salt to the water and stir to dissolve. Pour the water through the feed tube of the processor and pulse until the dough just starts to come together in a ball, you should still see some small butter chunks in the mix.
  3. Dump the dough out onto a well floured work surface, and divide it into two equal sized balls. Press each ball into a disc about an inch thick, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least a couple of hours, or overnight.
  4. for the pot pie filling - Pre-heat the oven to 400?. Quarter the fennel bulb, and cut out the wedge shaped core. Toss with a little olive oil, salt and pepper, and place on a baking sheet. Roast in the oven for about 20-25 minutes, until nicely caramelized. Remove from the oven, roughly chop and reserve.
  5. Place the fingerlings in a pan of cold water to cover. Place over high heat and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to a gentle boil and cook until just cooked through, about 10-12 minutes. Drain, place on a cutting board, and cut into coins. Toss in a bowl with a touch EVOO and reserve.
  6. Sauté mushrooms in a little olive oil with salt and pepper, until caramelized. Add mustard seeds and vermouth, and cook until all the liquid has evaporated, reserve.
  7. Make a roux by melting the butter over medium heat in a medium saucepan, add the flour, and whisk constantly for 2-3 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the 4 cups of reduced stock, whisk until smooth. Put back on the heat, add the cream and creme fraiche, and cook, whisking, until the sauce thickens to coat the back of a spoon. Whisk in the mustard and season with salt and pepper to taste. Add the minced tarragon and thyme, remove from heat to cool slightly.
  8. Put all filling ingredients (potatoes, tomatoes, onions, carrots, fennel, celery, haricot verts, mushrooms, and chicken) into a large mixing bowl, add the mustard velouté and mix well. Check for seasoning, reserve.
  9. Whisk the egg in a small bowl.
  10. Pour the filling to within 1/2” of the top of a 3” deep, 8-9” round soufflé dish (or other such ramekin or earthenware vessel)
  11. Roll the pastry dough on a well floured surface to about 1/8” thickness.
  12. Brush egg wash onto the rim of the ramekin and about halfway down the outside of the dish to hold the crust in place while baking.
  13. Place the rolled pastry on top of the pie, allowing about 2” to drape over the edges. Press into place to adhere to the dish, cut away any excess.
  14. Brush the entire crust with egg wash, and cut 8 small vent slits in the top. Put the pie on a sheet tray and place in the 400? oven for 30-35 minutes, until the crust is nicely browned, and the contents are seen bubbling through the vent holes. Remove from the oven and serve with a simple green salad.

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I am a father of five, who recently completed a two year professional hiatus during which I indulged my long held passion for cooking by moving to France to study the culinary arts and immerse myself in all things French. I earned “Le Grande Diplome” from Le Cordon Bleu, studied also at The Ritz Escoffier and Lenotre cooking schools, and completed the course offerings of the Bordeaux L’Ecole du Vin. About six months ago started "Oui, Chef", which is a food blog that exists as an extension of my efforts to teach my children a few things about cooking, and how our food choices over time effect not only our own health, but that of our local food communities and our planet at large. By sharing some of our cooking experiences through the blog, I hope to inspire other families to start spending more time together in the kitchen, cooking healthy meals as a family, passing on established familial food traditions, and perhaps starting some new ones.