Pot pies are full-of-flavor fare

Pot pies are beautiful to look at and extremely tasty to eat. With St. Patrick’s Day here, a beef pot pie, comprised of a favorite beef stew made with Guinness stout, is smashing celebratory food. However, so is chicken pot pie, the one here perfumed with herbs like tarragon and thyme and a cream sauce fortified with champagne.

Nourishing and comforting, pot pies are not easy to resist, particularly ones topped with rich puff pastry. You can make your own if you are very discriminating and don’t mind a lot of work, including pounding butter with a French rolling pin so that it remains pliable (yet still cold), but Pepperidge Farm brand puff pastry is good and conveniently available in the frozen foods section of the supermarket.

Besides the ease of ready-made puff pastry, if you are really into shortcuts, consider a rotisserie chicken for making chicken pot pie. Weighing around two pounds, a typical supermarket rotisserie chicken, will yield about one quart of cooked boneless, skinless chopped chicken. If you opt for a pre-cooked chicken, choose one that is not heavily seasoned. In addition, when you look over the recipe, be sure to linger a bit over the white sauce with herbs. The sauce is equally luscious served over plain poached chicken or fish, such as salmon.

Sue Ade is a syndicated food writer with broad experience and interest in the culinary arts. She has worked and resided in the Lowcountry of South Carolina since 1985 and may be reached at kitchenade@yahoo.com.

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