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I'll make what he's making

Posted by Sheryl Julian  March 1, 2011 03:27 PM

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This little honey is the turkey pot pie served at the Boston Public Library cafe, where I went last week. I was meeting friends who have been dining together for many years, including Holly Safford of The Catered Affair, who runs the restaurant at the BPL and caters many of events there. The restaurant was practically empty! I met Holly many years ago when she was doing dishes for Julia Child on her TV set at WGBH. I was food editor of the Boston Phoenix.

I had taught a food writing seminar at BU that morning, raced to get to Back Bay, and sat down famished. So I went right for the little pie, which was covered with a handful of tiny cress. The stalks sat on a puffy little round of pastry, with a wonderfully flavorful mixture of root vegetables and turkey in the bottom. The chef seems to be working in something of a camp kitchen, but managed to produce this lovely dish.

Here is another version of pot pie that I also like, from the Dorset Inn in Vermont.  This one is made with a biscuit crust.

Turkey pot pie with apples and biscuit crust

Serves 6


Roast a turkey breast for this or use good delicatessen turkey. Initially, the top is baked separately from the filling, so it’s golden and crisp after it’s baked again on the turkey mixture.



2 cups flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons solid vegetable shortening

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

1 cup whole milk

Extra flour (for rolling)


1. Set the oven at 350 degrees. Butter a deep 10-inch baking dish. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or butter it lightly.

2. In a bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Add the butter and shortening.  With your fingers or the tines of a fork, work the mixture together until it resembles sand. Add the parsley and milk and use a fork to work the liquids into the flour mixture to form a moist dough.

3. Transfer the dough to a floured counter and knead it lightly, adding a little more flour to make it manageable but not dry.

4. Roll the dough into an oblong or rectangle (the same shape and size as the baking dish). Carefully lift the dough onto the baking sheet. Bake the dough for 10 minutes. Set it aside to cool.



3 tablespoons butter

3 tablespoons flour

2 cups chicken stock, heated until hot

1/4 cup apple cider

Salt and pepper, to taste

4 cups cooked turkey meat, coarsely chopped

1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and coarsely chopped


1. In a small skillet, melt the butter and whisk in the flour. Cook over medium heat, stirring, for 2 minutes or until it is starting to brown. Whisk in the stock, cider, salt, and pepper. Cook, stirring, for 2 minutes more.

2.  Stir in the turkey, parsley, and apples.

3. Transfer the filling to the baking dish. Cover with the crust. Bake the pie for 35 to 45 minutes or until the mixture is bubbling at the edges and the crust is golden. Sheryl Julian. Adapted from the Dorset Inn, Dorset, Vt.

About Dishing

What's cooking in the world of food.


Sheryl Julian, the Globe's Food Editor, writes regularly for the Food section.

Devra First is the Globe's food reporter and restaurant critic. Her reviews appear weekly in the Food section.

Ellen Bhang reviews Cheap Eats restaurants for the Globe and writes about wine.

The Recipe Box Project:

If you want to contribute a recipe to The Recipe Box Project, please write it below. Also tell us where you got it (package box, cookbook, mom, friend -- include the name). We're looking for the kinds of dishes that people grew up on, that were served at family suppers, that tell a story, that are typically New England, or that you brought with you from a far away place to New England. We will print one of the recipes in the Food section once a month. To ask any questions, write to Debra Samuels, who is overseeing this project, at To discuss your recipes, click here.