Vintage Kitchen: Colonial Chicken Pie with Cornbread Crust

I wanted to share my guest post for OKRA magazine, the online magazine for the SoFAB Institute, umbrella organization of the Southern Food & Beverage Museum and the Museum of the American Cocktail, among other scholarly and culinary pursuits.

Now that we are fully fledged into winter (yes I’m talking about you, snow days), Corks & Cake is all about the pot pie.

 

Pulled chicken casserole with corn bread topping.

Colonial Corn Pie: pulled chicken casserole with corn bread topping.

I tested this recipe from The Kids in the Kitchen Cookbook from 1968 and it was fun to take a look backward and see what 1968 had to say.

By Lois Levine, published in 1968.

By Lois Levine, published in 1968.

 

Illustration by:

Illustration by Rosalie Petrash Schmidt

 

Illustration by:

Illustration by Rosalie Petrash Schmidt

 

Despite a whole chapter devoted to Gelatin and Puddings (hello mid-century potlucks and/or my Minnesota childhood), there were some recipes in here worth trying.

Go to my Vintage Kitchen column at OKRA for the whole review and vintage recipe.

 

Corn on the cob

Colonial corn pie.

I think the recipe could be tweaked and brought into the modern kitchen.  In my next iteration I’ll add some chopped green chiles, a light bechamel sauce or veloute to the shredded chicken, chopped shallots and maybe a handful of sauteed carrots, peas, or mushrooms, too.  

The corn bread topping was delicious.

I think Colonial-era cooks and certainly 1968-era cooks knew that pot pie was a great and tasty way to revive leftovers and I agree!  It is also because I love my cute Staub cocottes:

Staub cocottes

Spoon yesterday’s stew or shredded meat and roasted vegetables in those babies.  Moisten with a combination of chicken stock, leftover gravy, a dash of heavy cream.  Cover with pre-made pie crust and bake according to directions or just use those adorable lids and bake at 350° for 30 minutes.  I gave some leftover beef brisket and braised onions a new life last night by giving it the pot pie treatment.

The inventive cook circa 1760 or 1960!

Don't worry too much about the results; it's good to get kids in the kitchen for some hands-on experience.

Throw it in the pot with glee!

 

2 thoughts on “Vintage Kitchen: Colonial Chicken Pie with Cornbread Crust

  1. I love your cocettes! (are they mini dutch ovens?) I was thinking of making individual hotdishes using ramikins for Holiday meals. (non-Minnesotans will have to look up hotdish-lol.) In Ireland our “crumbles” came in indivial ramikins, so I am going to do that ,too. I have Irish current jam and raspberry for the fruit in them. Also will use those fruits for scones I will make for a post Christmas brunch we are having. Daughter loves Mom’s “green jello” and I haven’t made it in years, so I am thinking I will make that this year, too.

    • They are like mini dutch ovens–very heavy, oven-safe porcelain. I found them on clearance at Tuesday Morning. Score! I love your idea of mini “hot-dishes” (i.e., casseroles, for the non-Minnesotans). That way everyone gets their own little elegant serving.

      I also have the CorningWare French White stoneware ramekins in various sizes–I use those all the time for the kids–serve apple slices, berries, crackers, etc. Each child gets their own at a playdate and they think it’s super fancy.

      I don’t remember Mom’s green jello–must have blocked it out because I detest jello and other jiggly foods! (Except creme brulee, but that’s not quite jiggly is it?)

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