It’s a narrative bookended by lives lived on two different western coasts, in two different continents. Aged just 15, a precociously ambitious Cornwall native, Elliott Grover, contacted Mark Hix at The Ivy, Covent Garden asking for a chance to apply his skills in the kitchen. He was astounded to be offered a trial at Scott’s Mayfair in response, and hopped immediately into the passenger’s seat of his father’s car to be driven to London.
“After a trial period, I was given a permanent job at Le Caprice,” he once told Dorchester Collection’s website. “I’ll never forget spending my 16th birthday in their kitchen and being made to feel like part of the family. I like to think that my story is a good example of why you shouldn’t be afraid to follow your dreams.”
Now executive chef at Cut—Wolfgang Puck’s destination dining hotspot at Dorchester Collection’s 45 Park Lane—Grover, alongside Puck, catered for the 2023 Oscars this year at the Hollywood and Highland Center (Puck has been doing the Academy Awards menu for nearly 30 years). Three dishes were served up, including a delectable chicken pot pie: here, Grover shares the method behind it so that Robb Report readers can recreate it at home.
Chicken Pot Pie With Black Truffles
- 4 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 4 tbsp. all-purpose flour (plus more for dusting)
- 500 ml chicken stock
- Salt, to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 pinch cayenne pepper (optional), to taste
- 2 tbsp. double cream (plus more for egg wash)
- 1 kg cooked boneless, skinless chicken (shredded)
- 200 g carrot, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 200 g red-skinned potato, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 75 g frozen peas, or shelled fresh peas
- 250 g puff pastry, defrosted following package instructions
- 1 black truffle (optional), to taste
- 1 large egg
Melt the butter in a large, deep saucepan. Add the flour and whisk to ensure there are no lumps before adding the chicken stock. Cook for five to 10 minutes while continuously stirring.
Check the consistency by dipping the back of a spoon into the sauce and running your finger along the spoon. You want the sauce to cling to the spoon and not run over the swipe you made.
Continue to cook and stir the sauce over medium heat until you reach the correct consistency. Season with the salt, pepper and cayenne (if using). Taste the sauce and see if your sauce needs more seasoning.
Add the cream and stir to combine.
Add the shredded chicken, carrots, potatoes, and peas to the sauce. Cook the vegetables in the sauce for two to three minutes.
Transfer the filling to a clean bowl and chill in the refrigerator for one hour, or until cool.
Preheat the oven to 400˚F.
Roll out the puff pastry, using a bit of extra flour to ensure the pastry doesn’t stick to your work surface. Use a bowl or plate about an inch larger than the dish you are cooking your pot pie in as a guide to cut out your pastry.
Carefully spoon the chilled filling into oven-proof serving bowls.
Break the egg in a small bowl and add a tablespoon of water or cream. Whisk with a fork.
Brush the egg wash on the edges and rim of your dishes.
If desired, shave truffles over the filling. Lay the pastry rounds over the top, being careful not to stretch the pastry. Seal the edges of the pastry by lightly pushing it onto the rim of your dish to make sure it is secure.
Brush the top and sides with more egg wash.
Place the pot pies on a large baking sheet and bake for 25 to 35 minutes, until the pastry is a nice golden, dark brown and there are no more greyish raw patches.
Let cool for 5 minutes before serving.