Chicken and Corn Potpie, Pennsylvania Dutch Style

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PHOTO: ROB CARDILLO
Delicious chicken and corn potpie, Pennsylvania-Dutch style.

Chicken and corn potpie is a wonderful way to combine leftover chicken from a weekend dinner with summer’s bumper crop of fresh vegetables. The addition of freshly grated corn off the cob cannot compare in flavor with frozen, and if you use the cobs when making chicken stock, they will increase the flavor dramatically. If you need to use frozen corn, try ‘Shoepeg’ — it’s a favorite for this dish. Add ‘Jackson Wonder’ lima beans for visual effect and flavor.

One more thing: For readers who may be unfamiliar with this dish, potpie (or botboi in Pennsylfaanisch) is a square egg noodle that is used in cookery much like lasagna. If you cannot find Pennsylvania Dutch potpie noodles in your local store, you can make your own or use lasagna noodles, broken into pieces. You also can use the mixture without the noodles and bake it in traditional Yankee-style potpies with top crusts.

Ingredients:

• 2 cups cooked dry lima beans or 2 cups fresh, uncooked young lima beans
• 3 cups ‘Shoepeg’ corn or freshly grated sweet corn
• 1-1/2 cups chopped leeks or onions
• 1/2 cup celery, diced
• 2 cups cooked chicken, chopped
• 1 tsp grated nutmeg (or to taste)
• 1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
• 2 tsp dry marjoram, crumbled
• Salt and pepper, to taste
• 8 ounces potpie noodles or lasagna broken into pieces
• 2 quarts well-flavored chicken stock
• 3 tbsp unsalted butter (optional)

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Combine the beans, corn, leeks, chicken, nutmeg, parsley, and marjoram in a deep work bowl. Salt and pepper to taste. In a tall 4-quart casserole or earthenware baking dish, spread 3 cups of the vegetable and chicken mixture on the bottom. Make a layer of noodles, then cover with another 3 cups of mixture. Cover this with another layer of noodles, then add the remaining mixture and spread evenly. Scatter noodles broken into small pieces over the top. Add the chicken stock (just enough to cover the noodles and vegetables when pressed down gently with a fork). Dot with butter (optional), and bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until the noodles are tender. Serve immediately with crusty country-style bread.

Included in the recipe is the adaptable ‘Jackson Wonder’ lima bean. Read more on the heirloom bean including its uncommon flavor, color and hardiness.