Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Leftover Pot Pie

There are always tons of leftovers at the holidays and you need a solid recipe to use some of them up....this is it! Last Christmas we made an amazing prime rib but since Mr Pears sometimes overdoes things, like buying 10 plus pounds of prime rib for 6 people, we had some leftovers.  We decided to make this pot pie by Jamie Oliver and it was unbelievably good, we swore to make it again soon.  Fast forward to last weekends' 15 pound turkey....more leftovers.  Thankfully we remembered this recipe, it was pretty darn awesome with turkey too. Thank God because I have so much turkey over here that I made two of the pot pies and I'm going to do a turkey chili tomorrow.  Stocking up the freezer with week day meals!

Anyway.   This pot pie is really good and it works with just about any leftover meat you might have.  Certainly chicken, beef, turkey, or even ham.  It is easy to make  and it does make an awesome alternative to eating boring leftovers.  The pie has a flaky puff pastry crust and is stuffed with leeks.  Since leeks might not be something you use often (or ever), I'll say they have a very mild oniony flavor and a nice sweetness.  Make sure to wash them very well because they tend to be quite sandy.  Enjoy!

"Leftover" Pot Pie, adapted from Jamie Oliver
 2 slices of bacon, chopped
1 table fresh thyme leaves
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 tablespoons butter
4 lbs of leeks, washed, trimmed and sliced (trim off the dark green tops and just slice the white and light green parts)
1 1/2 lbs of leftover turkey/beef/chicken/ham, cut into bite-sized pieces
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning
4 cups chicken or vegetable stock
2 tablespoons of creme fraiche (you can also substitute Mexican crema, which I use, or sour cream)
1 sheet of store bought Puff Pastry, thawed
1 egg, beaten

In a very large saute pan or dutch oven over medium heat; cook the bacon with the thyme, olive oil and butter for about 5 minutes.  Add the leeks and cook them for a few minutes, just let them begin to wilt and turn them to coat well.  Cover the pan with a lid and allow the leeks to cook for about 30 minutes or until nice and soft.  Stir the leeks every ten minutes or so to make sure they don't stick to the pan or burn.

Once the leeks are done add the meat, seasoning and flour and stir it all together.  Stir in the stock and then the creme fraiche.  Bring the pot to a boil and let it simmer for five minutes.  Now place a large strainer over a bowl and pour the whole mixuture into it.  Reserve the amazing gravy left in the bowl for serving and put the strained pie filling into a baking dish.

Roll out the puff pastry to fit the top of the baking dish and then lay it over the dish.  Tuck the edges under to make it fit.  Now score the top of the pie diagonally with the tip of a sharp knife and brush it with the beaten egg.

Bake the pie in an oven that has been preheated to 375 F for about 35 to 40 minutes or until the pie is golden brown and puffy.  Serve with the warmed gravy!

The whole pie, yum.

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