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Chicken Pie With Cornmeal Crust

This chicken pie is quintessential comfort food for kids and adults. Instead of one large pie, you might bake it in two smaller casseroles or even nine individual dishes.

Kid-Friendly RecipePrep time: 40 minutes
Cook time: about 45 to 60 minutes
Yield: 9 servings


Filling
* 1 3/4 cups chicken broth
* 2 pounds boneless chicken breast, cut into 2-inch pieces
* 4 carrots, thinly sliced crosswise
* 4 tablespoons butter or margarine
* 1 medium onion, chopped, about 3/4 cup
* 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
* 1 cup low-fat milk
* 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
* 1 cup frozen peas, thawed
* 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped

Crust
* 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
* 1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
* 1 teaspoon sugar
* 1 teaspoon baking powder
* 1/2 cup plus 3 tablespoons milk
* 1 egg, lightly beaten
* 2 tablespoons peanut or olive oil

1. Heat broth and chicken in a large saucepan until boiling. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 2 minutes. With a slotted spoon, remove chicken to a 2-quart casserole dish and set aside. Add carrots to hot broth and simmer about 5 minutes, until fork-tender, then remove and add to the cooked chicken. Reserve the broth and set aside.

2. In another medium saucepan, melt butter or margarine over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the flour and cook for another 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and slowly whisk in the reserved broth. Return to heat and cook, stirring until sauce boils and thickens. Remove from heat; blend in milk and salt, then pour sauce over chicken and carrots. Mix in the peas and parsley, and set aside.

3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

4. In a small bowl, combine the flour, cornmeal, sugar, and baking powder. Using a fork, blend in the milk, egg, and oil. Pour over the chicken filling and spread to edges of dish with a spatula. Bake 45 to 50 minutes if 1 large pie (40 minutes if in 2 smaller casseroles, 35 minutes if 9 individual ones), or until crust is golden and filling is bubbly. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Freezing: Cool slightly, then chill. Cover tightly with aluminum foil and freeze.

Reheating: Thaw, then bake covered pie in a preheated 425-degree oven, removing foil halfway through. Bake 45 to 60 minutes (35 to 40 minutes if 2 smaller pies, 30 minutes if 9 small ones), or until a knife inserted into the center comes out hot. (To reheat from frozen, double the baking time.)

Kid-Friendly RecipeHow kids can help: Combine ingredients and mix the batter for the crust; pour over filling.
Per serving (1/9 recipe): 326 calories, 30 g protein, 11 g fat (4 g saturated), 24 g carbohydrate, 546 mg sodium, 92 mg cholesterol, 2 g fiber.

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