Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Chicken Shepherd's Pie (aka Potato-Topped Chicken Pot Pie)

Because it's getting kinda cozy inside at night...
you may want to whip up a Chicken Shepherd's Pie (aka Potato-Topped Chicken Pot Pie)

5 medium potatoes, peeled, cubed
1 C shredded cheddar cheese, divided
2 C chicken gravy (made from scratch or favorite packaged or jarred – ** see note below)
1 clove garlic, pressed
1/2 tsp parsley flakes
salt and pepper to taste
1 16 oz package frozen mixed veggies
2 chicken breasts, cooked and cubed
(I use the breasts from a rotisserie chicken)

Cook potatoes in a pot of salted water until soft. Drain and mash without adding milk or butter. They will be a bit dry or stiff – that's ok. Stir in 1/2 C of the shredded cheddar cheese and set aside. Reserve the rest of the cheese for later.

Make or heat the gravy in a medium sauce pan, adding the garlic and parsley. Add salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat and add the frozen veggies, stirring to coat.

Place half the veggie/gravy mixture in a greased deep dish pie plate or similar casserole dish.
Top with all the cubed chicken, then the remaining veggie/gravy mixture.
Place the mashed potatoes on the top, gently pushing down and forming a crust that covers the mixture.

Bake 30-40 minutes, until hot and bubbly and potatoes are starting to brown. (I use a meat thermometer after 30 minutes to make sure the center is above 165*. You want the center hot since the veggies were raw and frozen at the start)

Top with the remaining cheddar cheese and bake until the cheese is melted. Let stand for5 minutes before serving.

** Note on gravy: Since I eat gluten free, I always have to make my gravies and sauces from scratch. It's so easy and tasty that I don't miss the mix or jar (it's better for you too!)
Here's my method:
Have 2 C chicken broth ready (homemade, canned or reconstituted bouillon) In a medium saucepan, heat 2 T butter over high heat. Have 2 T flour ready (I use a rice flour mix that's GF – but use whatever flour you prefer)
Add flour all at once and whisk until incorporated with the butter. Slowly pour in the broth, whisking to keep smooth bring to a boil and whisk until starts to thicken. Remove from heat.

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