It’s been a while since I baked anything. Sure, I’ve used the oven for cooking pork chops and pizza (but not at the same time). I’ve warmed bread but not pies. Tonight, there is a confluence of events that ended up with me once again chopping meats, vegetables, and fruits and then covered in flour as I roll flat some thawed puff pastry for a covering.
It all began several months ago when one of my coworker’s wife was put on emergency bed rest. She was in her fourth or fifth month of pregnancy so she was in the hospital for several weeks. Many of her friends created a food calendar where people signed up to deliver food for a month. I signed up for December 21 which was the last day of work before Christmas. The sign up list usually asked what I was going to bring based on the family’s preferences. The answer: chicken pot pie.
December 21 is also the day that my extended family from Australia will be at my parents’ house for Christmas dinner. I volunteered to bring pies. At first, I wanted to bring two commercially made pies from the supermarket but my mom said no. There is nothing like the taste of home made apple pie. I then volunteered to make pies. With a total of 10 people at dinner, that’s two 9 inch pies!
The only thing to do was to suck it up, go to the grocery store with a shopping list, and begin chopping. I enlisted the help of my brother to make the apple pie because he was going to eat it too. All I asked him to do was to skin, core, and chop the apples. Having made apple pie from scratch before, the pie’s filling recipe came from memory. That left finding for the chicken pot pie.
Google is no longer the answer because everyone posted their version of the far too common dish. The question was whose recipe to use: allreceipe.com, Food Network, epicurous.com, Betty Crocker….
But again, having made it before 3 years ago for some friends who just had their first son, it was just a matter of choosing which one best matched my needs. I just need to know how long and at what temperature.
For the chicken pot pie, I used chicken (duh), potatoes, carrots, and mushrooms. To bind it all, one can of canned soup each. The pastry at the top was puff pastry rolled flat.
Behold, the two chicken pot pies!
I made the apple pies even as the chicken pot pies baked. The filling is just apples, brown sugar, cinnamon, and lemon juice. Instead of completely covering the apple pies, I used a coarse cut lattice also from the remainder of the puff pastry from the chicken pot pie.
This is one of two apple pies.
Now to clean up because I spilled some flour on the floor. All four pies have to be delivered tomorrow and it will be the beginning of a long weekend. Why? It’s Christmas!