January 04, 2014

Chicken Pot Pie (And used the crock pot for part of it)

Yesterday I took a package of chicken thighs out of the freezer and was deciding what to do with them.  My husband isn't a fan of dark meat, but loves the grilled chicken I usually make with them.  Yesterday was an icy cold kind of day and standing outside grilling wasn't on my agenda.  Instead, I was craving Chicken and Biscuits.  The only problem is that I knew my stomach would not like the white, refined flour used to make the awesomeness that is a tender, mile high, flaky Southern biscuit.  (The flour readily available today is genetically modified and isn't the same wheat we were eating even 15 years ago... so a lot of people and animals are having digestive issues with grains and corn today that never had issues before).  My hope is to invest in a wheat grinder and purchase non-GMO wheat to grind for our daily use but it's just not in the budget right now.  Instead, I decided I would make 2 versions of biscuits; regular and a lower carb option with almond flour.

After cooking the chicken in the crockpot and deboning it, I realized I might as well use the hot crockpot and the juices from the chicken to cook the vegetables in as well.

This is where I started to deviate from my 'normal' way of cooking this dish... ended up with a completely different dish (a Chicken Pot Pie) and even though I made it a 'healthier' version than usual, my teenage daughter raved about it.  Twice.  And my husband?  Not only kept saying how different it tasted and how good it was, but claimed the remaining half of the pan to take to work the next day for lunch!  Wow.  Who knew making a 'healthier' version of my normal, typical pot pie would bring out so many commpliments?

Not I.  Which is why I wasn't really bothering to take pictures of it as I made it.   So you don't get a finished product photo of the exact dish made last night but honestly it looked really similar to the ones I've posted before...  here.

I ended up making Chicken Pot Pie but also made a low carb biscuit on the side - which I ate instead of the more traditional biscuit topping that my husband and daughter had.

Chicken Pot Pie

4-6 chicken thighs
1 t water or oil (I used safflower)
Seasoning for the chicken; I used Lawry's Rotisserie Chicken Seasoning but you can use salt and pepper
1 medium onion
1 c diced or chopped carrots
1/2 c diced celery and the celery tops too (lots of flavor there)
1/4 c coconut oil
5 T whole wheat flour
1/2 t xanthan gum (option)
1/2 t poultry seasoning
1/2 t salt
1/8 t fresh black pepper
2 c chicken broth (2 c water and 2 cubes or teaspoons chicken bouillon)
2/3 c heavy cream with 1/3 cup water (or use milk)
Biscuit topping*

Place a tiny bit of oil or water in the crockpot and lay the chicken in - season with your favorite seasoning or just use a little salt and pepper.  Cook on high 2-3 hours until tender.  Remove and de-bone, saving and shredding or dicing the cooked chicken.  Place the carrots, onion and celery into the juices that are in the crock pot from cooking the chicken.  Continue to cook them in the crock pot until just tender.  Add the chicken back in and keep warm.

Melt the 1/4 c coconut in saucepan. Blend in flour, sprinkle the xanthan gum if you are using, salt, poultry seasoning (or sage and a tiny bit of thyme if you don't have poultry seasoning), and pepper. Whisk smooth and cook over medium heat for a minute or two until blended and starting to thicken.  Gradually add stock and then cream mixture or milk. Cook and stir over medium heat until thick and smooth. Add vegetables, and chicken. Pour into a greased shallow baking dish. Make a biscuit topping and top the vegetable mixture either with drop biscuits, cut squares or shape the dough into the shape of your dish and top it whole. Bake at 425 degree's for 25 minutes until the top is golden brown.

You can also use the chicken/vegetable/gravy mixture to pour over biscuits instead of making it into a pot pie!

Here are the Almond Flour Biscuits I made last night that I ate with it instead of the traditional biscuit topping (which I took off my helping).  They are a little dark because I used a darker almond flour with the brown almond skins left on so they look like they are whole wheat - and the oven rack was near the top of the oven and I was too lazy to move it down to the center or lower half of the oven before baking.  *grin* 

Almond Flour Biscuit

2 1/2 c almond flour
1/4 oat flour
1/2 t salt
1/2 t baking soda
1/4 t baking powder
1/4 c melted coconut oil (or use butter)
2 eggs*
1 T sugar free honey
3 T buttermilk*

*I used powdered eggs and powdered butter milk and added 1/4 cup cream and 1/4 c water to the mixture but I realize most people will just use eggs and buttermilk (or 3 T milk or cream with 1/2 t lemon juice or vinegar to sour it like buttermilk).  Mix the wet into the dry ingredients and either drop on parchment lined baking sheet or form into small balls and flatten slightly (like I did).  Bake at 425 for about 12-15 minutes until done.

This almond flour biscuit is a typical texture of most low carb biscuits - crumbly!  I'm going to be working on some low carb bread and roll recipes this week but this was just a quick one I threw together last night.  It looks like a bun, it's got the texture of a corn muffin but tasted like a yummy biscuit.  I laid mine on the plate, topped with the chicken gravy mixture and it was delicious! 

 My TWO different biscuits - ready to be mixed
One with regular flour (top) and one as an almond flour version.
Note I usually use blanched, white almond flour but this time used NOW brand, whole almond
flour, which has the bits of brown skin left during grinding so it's darker and looks like whole wheat.

You might also be interested in;

My regular, traditional biscuit recipe I've made almost exclusively since 1996 or so...  when not concerned with using white flour or the carb counts.

Southern Biscuits

2 c good quality white flour (you can substitute about 1/4 - 1/2 cup of the flour with whole wheat if you wish)
1 T baking powder
1/2 t salt
1 T sugar
1/4 c butter, cold
3/4 c milk

Place the flour, baking powder and salt into a large bowl and stir or whisk together. Add the butter in pieces and 'cut in' or pinch with your fingers until crumbly. Stir in the sugar and add the milk all at once. Mix with a fork until it holds together. Remove the dough and pat into a 1 inch high rectangle or circle with your hands on a lightly floured surface. Using a biscuit cutter or a circle cookie cutter cut straight down, do not twist! You can use a knife and slice the dough into squares if you don't have a cutter. Place on an un-greased pan. Brush with melted butter if you prefer and bake 12-15 minutes at 450.

These biscuits are so tender they can wrapped and reheated the next day. 

You might be interested in a round biscuit cutter:


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