Country Chicken Pot Pies

I found this recipe on a 30-Day Gourmet board many years ago. It's a wonderful recipe that has been a family favorite. I make this often as a meal to bring to a family with a new baby or someone who is ill. It's one people rave about. We certainly rave about it, too. I wish I knew who to give credit to for this great recipe.

Makes 2 pies.

1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup chopped carrot
1/3 cup butter or margarine
1/2 cup all-purpose flour, sifted
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup half & half or evaporated milk
2 cups chicken, cooked, chopped
1 cup frozen peas, thawed
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
4 unbaked pie crusts

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Prepare crusts. Roll them out and place the bottom crusts in the pie plates and set aside the top crusts until ready to cover.

Saute the first 3 ingredients in butter in a big skillet over medium heat until tender. Add flour; stir until smooth. Cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add chicken broth and half & half/evap. milk; cook, stirring constantly until thickened and bubbly.

Stir in chicken, peas, salt, and pepper. Cool before pouring into pie crusts. VERY important.

Pour into bottom crusts and cover with top crusts. Fold edges under and crimp. Poke slits in the top (I like to make a nice pattern.).

Bake, uncovered, for 30 minutes, then cover with foil and bake 30 more minutes. (or you can use a pie crust shield on each one (found at places like Linens & Things) and they can bake uncovered for the full hour. Remove from oven and let rest for 10 minutes before cutting. Serves 16. An alternative to making 2 pies is to make one and freeze the other half of the filling in a Ziploc bag for another time. Freezes very well separately or fully prepared in the crust.