Hello friends, it’s been awhile. How are you? Have you been enjoying the changing leaves and falling temps? Here in Wisconsin we are having some of the best fall colors we’ve had in years and it feels like a gift to us all for surviving the madness that is 2020.
The past three weeks on the farm have been absolutely lovely. Surrounded by gold tree lines, wispy grasses, and moody skies, we’ve been working away on cleaning up the fields and hauling in the last of the storage crops. Despite all our fears about fall, all the late plantings and seedings lost in the greenhouse, the CSA boxes have turned out pretty swell. Today we deliver our last CSA box and it is a celebration of mid-October. It’s packed full of hearty roots (turnips, celeriac, radishes, sweet potatoes) and brassicas (broccoli, cabbage, mustard greens) along with some lettuce and a leek or two. It’s a gorgeous colorful fall goodbye.
And this recipe, this recipe celebrates all of it: the last box of the season, the crisp fall weather, the changing leaves, the transition to storage veggies that it can be hard to get excited about (because as much as I love local food, I will never pretend to love a turnip as much as a tomato), and the heavier flavors of colder days.
Shifting towards pot pie on a gray October day just feels right. And I love that this particular pot pie recipe because it focuses on a couple harder to use (for me at least) fall veggies. It’s so easy to throw diced potatoes, carrots, and frozen peas in a pot pie, but why not add more robust flavors? I love the way the lowly turnip takes center stage. It adds complexity to the rich sauce.
Celery and mushrooms also turn things up a notch. Celery is an aromatic vegetable, similar to onion and garlic, which again just adds a little boost of flavor to the final dish. I’m sure the addition of mushrooms was not completely essential, but I had a bunch in my fridge and just can’t skip them when using complementary ingredients like white wine and cream. Mushrooms are made for a white sauce–adding an earthiness that just can’t be substituted any other way.
So yes, the flavors are bold. It’s a heavy hitting recipe- definitely a 10/10 in the flavor department- but I also love this recipe because of it’s simplicity. It may not seem simple. I know I’m asking you to make a pie crust from scratch, but that is only because 1) I know you are capable, 2) the rest of the recipe comes together so easily, and 3) because pot pie (with a single crust on top) is the most forgivable kind of pie.
I hope you love this recipe and that it brings you maximum levels of comfort and joy. I hope you save the chicken bones to make a lovely stock for a nice light soup to be devoured later in the week, and I hope you enjoy every single bite.
ONE-SKILLET TURNIP, MUSHROOM & ROTISSERIE CHICKEN POT PIE
Adapted from Bon Appetit
Takes 1 hour (plus time to chill the pie dough)
1-1/4 cup flour
1-1/2 teaspoons sugar
2-1/2 teaspoons Kosher salt, divided
13 tablespoons butter, divided
1/2 cup ice water (literally a 1/2 cup of water with an ice cube or two thrown in)
1 yellow onion, diced (or 1-2 diced leeks)
10 twists freshly ground black pepper (or 1 teaspoon black pepper)
2 purple top turnips, peeled diced (about 2 cups)
8 ounces cremini (or shittake) mushrooms, diced
6 smashed garlic cloves
3-4 stalks celery, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons flour
1 cup white wine
1 rotisserie chicken
1/2 teaspoon thyme
2 cups heavy cream
- Prepare your pie dough by combine flour, sugar and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a medium bowl.
- Cut 8 tablespoons (or 1 stick) of very chilled butter into small cubes and add to the flour mixture. Cut butter in with a pastry blender or two forks. Use your fingers at the end to pinch any large pieces of butter apart until they are no bigger than the size of a pea.
- Add in half of the water and stir to combine. Add in as much more water as you need to bring the dough together, being careful not to over stir or use too much water.
- Wrap pie dough in plastic wrap and chill in the freezer while you prepare your filling.
- Shred rotisserie chicken meat into a large bowl, reserving skin and carcass for another use. Set aside.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- In a 12-inch cast-iron skillet (or other heavy, oven-proof skillet), melt remaining 5 tablespoons butter. Add onion, 1 teaspoon of salt and pepper. Saute for 5 minutes until softened and fragrant. Add turnips and cook 5 minutes longer. Add mushrooms, garlic, and celery. Cook until mushrooms are softened, about 5 minutes longer.
- Add flour to skillet and stir for 30 seconds until all vegetables are well coated. When flour just begins to stick and brown, add in wine. Stir for 30 seconds until wine is reduced and vegetables are coated in a thick roux. Add reserve chicken, remaining 1 teaspoon Kosher salt, thyme and cream, reserving a couple drops of the cream for glazing your pastry.
- Bring to a simmer and cook until everything is heated through, about 5 minutes longer.
- On a floured surface, roll out chilled pie dough to about the size and shape of your skillet. Fold into quarters to easy transfer it over to the pan while holding it’s shape. Unfold on top of chicken mixture.
- Pour reserved drops of cream onto dough and spread out with your fingers or a pastry brush. Poke five holes in the center of your pie crust.
- Place skillet on a baking sheet (to catch any liquid that spills out) and bake for 25 minutes. After 25 minutes, reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees and bake 25-30 minutes longer, until the crust is golden brown. Let sit 10 minutes before serving.