Updated Thursday, June 6th, 2002
In 1978 we brought you the story of the now late Nellie Reed and her famous chicken pies. For years the people of Owl's Head, Maine, said the best pie crust they'd ever eaten was made by Nellie. And the best filling between two crusts on the entire coast of Maine was Nellie's chicken pie -- with double gravy, of course . . .
Boil a 3-pound chicken in salted water (2 teaspoons of salt). When done (about 1-1/2 hours), pick meat off, cut into bite-size chunks, and refrigerate until the following day.
With the chicken removed, set the chicken broth out overnight. Skim off most of the fat the next day, but leave enough for flavor. Add 1 can Campbell's onion soup, and bring broth to boil. Thicken broth with paste made from flour and water, using as much as necessary to make desired consistency. Strain gravy to remove onions.
Soften lard until it is pliable; put in mixing bowl. Add salt. Add flour. Then put the hands to work. Don't mix with a spoon. Mix the flour and lard until it resembles soft putty. Add water and mix well. Section off dough for four double crusts. Freeze three sections in separate plastic bags. Roll dough for one double crust thin. Place bottom crust in pie plate and fill with chicken. Cover with 1-3/4 cups gravy, then with top crust. Spread butter on top crust. Bake 30 minutes at 400 degrees F. Serve hot with extra gravy.
In this issue: Summer Off the Beaten Path
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