In mid January, I announced the Savory of the Month as Pot Pies. We had not had a Savory of the Month since last winter. It is almost impossible to do it in the summer from a time perspective and it is not really widely received, as everyone is vacationing , at the lake, or just on the go. People are grilling and eating as much fresh produce and fruits as they can! Also, summer is really busy at La Dolce Vita with the Farmer's Market added to the rest of our responsibilities. But once summer is over, and the kids are back in school, we all settle into a routine--- that's when the Savories of the Month come in handy. It is great to stock your freezer with food that you know someone made with all natural ingredients, no artificial colors or preservatives, and is not full of things you cannot pronounce and have no idea what they mean. People begin asking me in the late summer when the SOM is starting again and what will be made. And do you know what the number one, hands down, request it? POT PIES!!!!
I have a love/hate relationship with Pot Pies. I capitalize the words because I feel as if they are a proper noun because they take on a force all their own and consume my life for about 3 weeks. They are like very demanding children. I love them in the fact that you love them, they are delicious, and they are the perfect food for winter. I love them because, contrary to popular belief, they are NOT as unhealthy as they get blamed to be. Yes, the crust is fattening. I cannot pretend otherwise. Several people asked for a single crust, so that cuts a lot of calories there. The recipe I have adapted mine from uses only 1/4 c flour for 4 large pies and 1/4 c cream. The rest of the ingredients that make the sauce is chicken stock! Oh- and some butter for browning the onions :) Other than that, everything in these except the peas and corn are cut up by hand and are fresh. I hate them in the fact that they are the most labor intensive thing I make. I have tried many ways to try to shorten the time factor, but it is impossible. There is no step that is able to be skipped or condensed. One day is dedicated to grocery shopping and prepping. The next day is usually dedicated to making the crust and roasting chicken. The next day might be used to making as much of the filling as I can. And the last is for rolling out the crusts, filling them, wrapping them and freezing them. Due to the high volume, it must be done like this over and over as I must freeze them right away to assure freshness. So far, this is what has been cooking in the La Dolce Kitchen, AT LEAST:
130 lbs chicken breasts roasted
170 lbs potatoes peeled, diced and parboiled
130lbs carrots, peeled, diced and parboiled
20 lbs peas added
50 lbs flour made into crust
As for the rest of the ingredients, sometimes we throw in corn , squash or zucchini to add more color. It adds some excitement for me too. Who knew chopping broccoli on a whim could make me so happy? Perhaps one year I'll throw caution to the wind and add cauliflower. I know, I'm pretty crazy.
I want to take this opportunity to thank Connie Godley and Peggy Trenkner for the HOURS they spent helping me. THANK YOU!!!!! And my tiny little staff has worked many extra hours to get these done at night and on several Saturdays.
So please, enjoy them and KNOW that so much care was taken to make them for you. My goal is to provide the very finest food for you, your friends, and your family executed correctly and with the best ingredients I can find.