The Mrs. Hering’s Chicken Pot Pie at the Walnut Room in Macy's State Street has been part of family holiday traditions for years. Now is your chance to not only make the decadent pot pie’s at home, but also get a little history of how Mrs. Hering’s Chicken Pot Pie, became the tradition it is today.
At the turn of the 19th century, it was not acceptable for a lady to dine unescorted by a gentleman while out in public. If a woman got a little peckish while shopping, she would need to return home to grab a snack. One day, a sales associate in the Millinery (Hat) Department named Mrs. Hering, broke tradition by sharing her own lunch, a pot pie from her grandma's recipe, with a very hungry client. The client enjoyed the homemade chicken pot pie so much, she convinced Mrs. Hering to make more pies and proceeded to invite her friends to dine the next day and view the latest fashions in hats. Legend has it that Marshall Field was making his rounds, heard laughter from the back room of the millinery department, and poked his head in.
Marshall Field was known for always going above and beyond in providing the best customer service by “giving the lady what she wants.”
When the South Tea Room opened in 1907, Marshall Field ensured that the pot pie by Mrs. Hering was added to the menu. The Tea Room was officially named the Walnut Room in 1937 and Mrs. Hering’s Pot Pie is still one of the most popular dishes on the menu over a century later.
1 sheet frozen puff pastry dough, thawed
3 tablespoons chicken fat or butter
¼ cup flour
2 cups chicken broth
To taste kosher salt
To taste freshly ground black pepper
12 ounces cooked chicken breast meat, cut into strips
¼ cup tiny frozen peas, thawed
¼ cup diced cooked carrot
Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Have ready 4 individual casseroles with 1 ½ - 2 cup capacity. Cut circles from the puff pastry to fit the tops of the casseroles. Make two 1-inch slashes in the center of each casserole.
Melt fat or butter in a medium pan and stir in flour. Cook 1 minute. Add broth, whisking until smooth. Heat to a boil and cook 1 – 2 minutes until thickened. Season with salt and pepper.
Add chicken, peas and carrots. Divide the mixture among the casseroles. Top with a pastry round, tucking the edges in.
Bake 22-27 minutes until puffy and golden. Serve hot.
Makes 4 pies.