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Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Seafood Pot Pie

This is not your ordinary grandma-style pot pie!  A mouthwatering blend of seafood, homemade stock and a creamy white wine sauce, this recipe is perfect for your next special occasion. 

Unfortunately, we weren't able to find as much lobster as we would have liked, so we had to improvise a little, and the results were fantastic.  The base for the creamy sauce started with a batch of homemade stock made from shrimp and lobster shells and white wine.  Yes, it does take a little extra time to make the stock, but the flavor was SO worth it.   This meal is something that will impress your guests and have them asking for the recipe.  Enjoy!!

Prepare the Seafood Stock

4-6 cups  Seafood Shells (I used the lobster shells and shrimp shells)
1  Large Onion, chopped
1  Carrot, chopped
1  Celery Rib, chopped
Cold Water (enough to cover shells)
1/2 tsp  Dried Thyme
2 tsp  Fresh Parsley
1 Bay Leaf
12  Whole Black Peppercorns
1/2 cup Dry White Wine

In a large soup pot combine shells, onion, carrot, and celery, and add enough water to cover.  Place the remaining spices in a piece of cheesecloth and tie the top.  (If you don't have cheesecloth, I used a tea ball and it worked great!).

Add the spice bundle to the pot and bring to a boil.  When the stock begins to boil, skim off the foam.  Allow the stock to boil for about 10 minutes, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer stock for 30 minutes, then add the white wine and simmer 10 minutes longer.  Strain the stock using cheesecloth and a colander and discard shells.  Use the amount of stock needed and the remainder can be frozen for another recipe.

For the pot pie crust, I did cheat a bit on this step and used store bought pie crust.  I used a glass to cut 2 large circles for each pie, placed them on a baking sheet with 1 circle overlapping the other.  For seasoning I added a sprinkle of thyme and kosher salt and baked them per the instructions, then set aside.

Now for the Filling
2 TB  Butter
1  Small Onion, finely diced
4  Yukon Gold Potatoes, diced in 1/2-inch cubes
2  Carrots, diced
1/2 cup  Frozen Pearl Onions
1 tsp  Kosher Salt
1/4 tsp  White Pepper
2 cups  Seafood Stock
1 cup  Half and Half
1 lb  Shrimp, (21-25 size) peeled and deveined then sliced down the center, shells reserved to make stock (above)
2  Medium Lobster Tails (gently remove meat from shells & cut into 1-inch cubes, reserve shells for stock)
3/4 lb  Bay Scallops, rinsed
4 TB  Butter
4 TB  Flour

In a large soup pot, melt the 2 TB butter.  Add the onion, potatoes, carrot and pearl onions, stirring to coat with the butter.  Sprinkle with the kosher salt and pepper and cook about 5 minutes until the vegetables begin to brown on the edges but are not fully cooked.

While the vegetables are cooking you can get the next step ready. 

In a small skillet make a roux by melting the 4 TB butter over medium heat, next adding the 4 TB flour and stirring until the mixture turns slightly brown.  ** You may not use all of this mixture depending on the thickness of the broth desired.  I used about 3/4 of the roux by it's always better to have a bit extra on hand should you need it!  Keep the mixture warm.

Back to the filling:  Add the seafood stock and half and half to the pot and gently stir the vegetables, cooking for about 5 minutes until the carrots and potatoes are almost tender. Carefully add the shrimp to the pot making sure to push them down into the broth, and simmer on low for 3 minutes. Next add the lobster, followed by the scallops.  These will cook very quickly and only need about 4 minutes to finish the filling.  Increase the heat slightly to medium and add a few teaspoons of the roux to the filling, stirring gently and adding more roux as needed to get the desired consistency.

Spoon the filing into soup bowls, add the double-circle crust on top of each and serve.

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