Chicken Thigh Pie

Aired September 17, 2008

6 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch dice
1 tablespoon EVOO - Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces
Salt and ground black pepper
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 cup chicken stock
1/4 cup orange or pineapple juice
1/2 cup barbecue sauce
4 scallions, thinly sliced
1 cup frozen peas, defrosted
2 boxes cornbread mix, such as Jiffy brand
2 eggs
2/3 cup milk

Preheat oven to 400F (for Jiffy) for the cornbread.

Place a medium saucepan over medium-high heat with the sweet potatoes and enough cold water to cover them. Bring the water up to a bubble, then reduce the heat to medium and boil the sweet potatoes until tender, about 15 minutes. Drain the cooked potatoes and reserve.

While the potatoes are cooking, place a large skillet over medium-high heat with 1 turn of the pan of EVOO, about 1 tablespoon. Season the chicken thighs with salt and pepper, and add to the hot pan. Cook the chicken, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, about 5 minutes.

Remove the browned chicken to a plate and add the butter to the pan to melt. Sprinkle the flour over the melted butter and cook for about a minute. Whisk the stock and juice into the butter-flour mixture and cook until thickened, about 1 minute. Add the barbecue sauce, scallions, peas, reserved chicken and potatoes to the pan, and stir to combine. Season again with salt and pepper and transfer to a casserole dish.

Prepare cornbread batter according to package directions. Spread over the top of the casserole and bake until the bread is cooked through, about 12-15 minutes.

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