Chicken Pot Pies


Chicken potpie—a comfort food classic—gets unexpected flavor, and kick, from cognac.


  • 1 whole chicken (3 ½ to 4 pounds)

  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 1 pound Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and diced

  • 3 medium carrots, peeled and diced

  • 1 medium onion, peeled and diced

  • 12 ounces cremini mushrooms, trimmed and quartered

  • cup cognac

  • 5 tablespoons all-purpose flour

  • 1 cup whole milk

  • 1 cup fresh or frozen peas

  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves

  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

  • 1 ½ sheets frozen puff pastry, from 2 (14-ounce) boxes, thawed

  • 1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk


  1. Place chicken in a large stockpot and add enough water to cover by 2 inches. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, reduce to a simmer, and cook until chicken is cooked through (until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part registers 165 degrees), about 50 minutes to 1 hour. Use tongs to remove chicken. When cool enough to handle, pull off and discard the skin, then separate the meat from the bones and tear into bite-size pieces. Reserve 2 cups of stock for the pot pie and the rest for another use.

  2. In a large heavy-bottomed pot, melt butter over medium-high heat. Add potatoes, carrots, and onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, until potatoes and carrots are fork-tender, 10 to 12 minutes. Add mushrooms, cooking until mushrooms are heated through. Add cognac and cook for 2 minutes. Add flour and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Pour in reserved 2 cups chicken stock and milk. Bring to a simmer; cook, stirring constantly, until thick and bubbly, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in chicken, peas, parsley, and thyme. Season with salt and pepper. Ladle into six (12-ounce) ramekins, let cool.

  3. Roll out thawed puff pastry on a lightly floured surface to a 1/4-inch thickness. Cut out six circles that are 1 inch wider than ramekins or bowls being used. Cut a 1/2-inch vent hole in the center of each circle. Transfer puff pastry circles to a parchment-lined baking sheet and freeze for 20 minutes.

  4. In a small bowl, whisk together egg, egg yolk, and 1 teaspoon water. Remove puff pastry circles from freezer. Top each ramekin with a puff pastry circle, crimping edges over sides to seal, and brush with egg wash. Transfer to refrigerator and chill for 30 minutes.

  5. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Transfer ramekins to a rimmed baking sheet. Bake until puff pastry is deep golden brown and filling is bubbling, 20 to 25 minutes.

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