And the days passed made for a productive weekend! In the matter of three days, we managed to buy a sofa, clean out our shed, get our patio set up, stake out the garden, and nearly complete our first furniture build. We were seriously busy.
But all of this work led to some serious hunger and I had just the right comfort food planned to satisfy our appetites- Pheasant Pot Pie. I have actually made this before and it was good, but I am always looking for ways to improve and this time it turned out excellent. I will warn that cooking the meat can become quite a process. It is very important not to allow the meat to become overdone. Watch it carefully and remove it from the pot when it is done.
What you’ll need:
¼ cup flour
1 t. salt
1 t. pepper
1 t. paprika
2 T. butter
2 T. canola oil
1 pheasant, cut into pieces
4 carrots, chopped
1 onion, chopped
4 celery stalks, chopped
Small pot boiling water
2 T. butter
2 T. flour
1 cup cream
1 ½ cups all-purpose white flour
½ cup whole wheat flour
2 t. baking soda
½ t. salt
1 t. sugar
1/4 cup cold unsalted butter
¾ cup milk
Begin by combining the salt, pepper, flour, and paprika in a shallow baking dish. Toss the pheasant pieces in the flour mix, shake off any access, and set aside.
Heat 2 T. butter and oil in a large pot over medium high heat. I used a 5 qt. enameled cast iron and it just fit all the pieces. Add the floured pheasant pieces and brown on all sides. Once the breasts become brown, remove them to a cutting board. Add the carrots and onions. Cook until the vegetables turn tender. Meanwhile, cut the breast pieces into bit sized chunks and return to the pot to continue cooking.
When the breast pieces are cooked through, remove them with a slotted spoon and set aside. Add the celery and just enough boiling water to the pot to cover everything. Cover and cook until the celery is tender. Watch for the leg pieces to be done and remove from the pot. Once the leg pieces are cool enough to handle, remove the meat and add it to the bowl with the breast pieces.
Once the vegetables have cooked through, removed them with a slotted spoon and set aside.
In a small sauce pan, melt the 2 T. butter. Whisk in the flour. When the flour and butter are combined, whisk in the cream. Slowly add this to the remaining broth in the pot, stirring constantly. Salt and pepper the gravy to taste. (Since the biscuits have a bit of sweetness to them, I found it best to add slightly more salt than my taste buds called for.)
To assemble the pies, begin by spooning equal portions of meat into each dish. Next, spoon equal portions of vegetables into each dish. And lastly, ladle in enough gravy to cover everything. (This could also be made using one large pie dish. I chose to make individual cups.)
Place the dishes in the refrigerator and allow to cool through.
While the filling cools, prepare the biscuit crust. Combine all of the dry ingredients and mix through. Cut in the butter using a pastry blender or two knives. After the butter is blended through and the dough has a crumbly texture, mix in the milk. On a well-floured surface, dump out the dough and knead to combine through. Using your hands, press out the dough until it is about ½ inch thick and cut out pieces that are slightly larger than your baking dishes. Set aside until the filling is cooled. With any extra dough, cut individual biscuits to bake along with the pies.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. After the filling has cooled, allow to sit at room temperature for 5 minutes. Wet the rim of each dish and place the dough piece on top. Allow it to sink in and crimp to the sides. Cut a slit in the center of each cup to release steam.
Place each cup topped with dough onto a baking sheet and bake at 350 for 25- 30 minutes. Bake any additional biscuits alongside the soup cups removing them after 15- 20 minutes.
Allow the individual pies to cool 5 minutes before serving.
Results: It is extremely important to watch the pheasant meats. Pheasant can easily become overdone and by watching it closely, a tender meat will result. Additionally, it is very important to be sure the filling is cooled throughout before adding the biscuit crust and baking. This ensures that everything will cook evenly. This was a filling and hearty dish that paired well with a light veggie filled salad.