Monday, January 30, 2017

Chicken Pot Pie Stew: An Instant Pot Story

Takes me right back!
The diet that we enjoyed on my parents' farm growing up would be the envy of many foodies today. We grew most of our own vegetables, apples, pears, plums, and many herbs. We raised chickens, so our eggs were always warm-from-the-chicken-butt fresh. We raised beef cattle, grew the hay they lived on in the winter, and grazed them on our own land the rest of the year. Our water came from our own well, and our mushrooms grew among the fragrant piles of cow poo in our own pastures. My Mom was a very good cook, so you put all those things together and it's no wonder I have a passionate relationship with food.

Every once in a while though, Mom wouldn't feel up to cooking, so we would get something from the frozen food aisle. My favourite was Swanson's Chicken Pot Pies. I don't know what it was about them - probably the excessive salt - that made me love them so much.

Limiting my carbohydrates to keep my diabetes in remission means I probably wouldn't splurge on one of those pot pie crusts (36 freaking grams!!), but I have found a way to have something very much like the pot pie experience using the fabulous Instant Pot.

Chicken Instant Pot Pie Stew

  • 1 diced onion
  • 2-3 tablespoons oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 5-6 boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 16 ounce package of mixed frozen vegetables (Just do it once; you'll understand)
  • 2 cups half and half
  • 3 tablespoons flour or corn starch
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Turn the Instant Pot to sauté and wait for the display to say “HOT”. Add the cold oil and onions, stirring occasionally for 2 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté for a further minute.

Hit the cancel button and add the stock and chicken thighs. Stir to deglaze the bottom of the pot. Put the lid on, set the vent control to “SEALING” and press the poultry button.

When the cycle is done, hit the cancel button and turn the vent control to do a quick release of pressure. Use a slotted spoon to remove the chicken pieces and set aside in a bowl.

Press the sauté button to bring the stock and onions back up to boiling.

Use two forks to shred the chicken.

Whisk the flour or cornstarch into the half and half.

When the stock in the pot is boiling, add the frozen vegetables and let them cook for 5 minutes. Pour in the dairy and starch mixture and stir until thickened.

Return the chicken to the pot to heat back up and serve!

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