Bottomless Veggie Pot Pie

This pot pie recipe is one of my favorites!  Warm gravy and delicious crust make this an ultimate comfort food for me.  I call it “bottomless” because there is no bottom crust, only a top.  Of course, you can make a bottom crust if you like.  Just double the crust recipe and pre-bake the crust 5-10 minutes or so before adding the filling and the top crust.

Feel free to use whatever veggies you have on hand.  My go-to veggies are potatoes, carrots, onion, celery, lima beans, red lentils, broccoli, peas, and green beans.  Cubes of tofu wouldn’t be bad either, if you like tofu.  Chopped seitan would make this more similar to the chicken pot pie that we grew up with. 

Crust Ingredients:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup margarine (I use Earth Balance)
2 tablespoons non-dairy milk (I use rice or almond milk)

Filling Ingredients:
1 rounded cup each of chopped carrots, celery, and onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 small potato, diced small (about 1 cup)
1/2 to 3/4 cup each of frozen peas, green beans, and broccoli
1/3 cup red lentils (or you can use tofu, seitan, or beans for protein)
1 cup vegetable broth
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon dried sage
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 cup non-dairy milk
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

Start making the filling first.  Heat a tablespoon of oil over medium heat and saute the onions for 5 minutes.  Add in the carrots, celery, and garlic and saute another 5 minutes.  Add your frozen veggies, lentils, spices, and broth.  Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer about 6 minutes.

While the veggies are cooking, go ahead and make the crust.  Pulse the flour and salt in a food processor (you can use a wet or dry blade – they both work equally as well for me).  Cut the margarine into little cubes (slightly smaller than the size of a bullion cube) and drop into the flour.  You can also pinch off small bits at a time with your fingers and drop it in.  Pulse again until you have a corn-meal type texture.  Add in the milk and let the processor run until a dough ball forms.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Roll out the dough on clean surface that’s been dusted with flour (dust your rolling pin too).  Make sure it’s a large enough circle to cover your pie plate.  Now would be a good time to go ahead and grease a deep-dish 9″ pie plate too.

Back to the filling:  push the veggies to the side and tilt the pan so that the liquid runs to one side.  Pour in the 1/2 cup milk and add your 2 tablespoons of flour.  Whisk well and then stir everything around until you have a gravy-like consistency.

Pour your filling into the prepared pie plate and top with your rolled out dough.  It doesn’t have to look perfect, but if you’re serving it to guests, you can use a pie crust cutter around the edges.  Cut a few slits in the dough for steam to escape and bake for 25 minutes.

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