I'm pleased to welcome Larissa Reinhart back to Cozy Up With Kathy. Larissa writes the Finley Goodhard Crime Capers. THE CUPID CAPER is the first book in the series and was released earlier this year.
Thanks so much for having me on today, Kathy. For those who read my amateur sleuth books, they know my heroines aren’t cooks. However, they do like to eat. A lot. (Some maybe too much.) And they do have family or friends who cook for them.
For my ex-con artist trying to do right, Finley Goodhart in THE CUPID CAPER, the chef is her ex-partner and ex-boyfriend, Lex Leopold. Clever Lex knows the way to a girl’s heart is through her stomach. That’s actually how my husband caught me. I think we were ten years into our marriage before I took an interest in cooking.
However, unlike my husband, Lex is British and a charming con artist — brilliant and brilliantly frustrating, as Finley would say. And although he could make her a Michelin-star worthy meal, Lex knows Finley is a small town, Southern girl. She didn’t grow up eating sushi, coq au vin, or chateaubriand. He keeps it simple and Southern, food Finley's mother might have made at one time.
One of my family favorite’s is chicken pot pie. I often make this after roasting a chicken and use the leftover chicken. But you can make it with any leftover cooked chicken. It’s simple because I use puff pastry for the crust for a lighter feel. And because I don’t use canned soup and fresh ingredients it has more of a savory, homemade taste.
I can see Lex making this for Finley. The British love their savory pies. (Probably where we got this recipe from!)
Chicken Pot Pie (serves 6)
1 package of thawed puff pastry sheets
1/3 c butter
2 cups diced carrots (about 4 carrots)
1.5 cups chopped onion (about 3 onions)
3 cups sliced mushrooms (8 ounce package)
1/3 cup flour
3 1/4 c chicken broth/stock
1 T Dijon mustard
1 t dried thyme
1/2 t ground black pepper
3 c cubed cooked chicken
1 c thawed frozen peas
1 T dried parsley or 3 chopped fresh parsley
Heat the oven to 400F. Choose your casserole dish (2 quarts round or I use a lasagna pan) and roll one pastry sheet into a size slightly larger than the bottom. Press it into the casserole dish, prick it with a fork, cover in aluminum foil, and bake it for 25 minutes.
Remove the foil. Place on a baking sheet. (It’ll bubble over!)
While it’s baking, Unfold the remaining pastry sheet. Cut it crosswise into 6 equal strips for a lattice. Or cut it to size for a top crust. Cut holes in the top crust (you can get fancy or I just make slits).
Over medium heat, melt the butter in a large skillet. Add the carrots, onions, and mushrooms and cook for about 5 minutes or until they are tender. Be sure to stir. Add the flour. Cook and stir for about three minutes or until it’s golden brown. Slowly stir in the broth. Cook and stir until the mixture boils and thickens.
Stir in the mustard, thyme, black peeper, chicken, peas, and parsley. Turn off the heat.
Spoon the chicken mixture into the casserole dish (don’t forget to remove the foil!). Weave your lattice strips or place your top pastry over it. Trim the excess.
Bake for 45 minutes or until the filling is bubbling and the pastry is golden brown.
Thanks so much. I’ll have to put this in the next Finley Goodhart book. :)