Health & Body

Making Chicken Pot Pie with James Whiteside

Jim Lafferty

"I don't cook for just one or two people," says James Whiteside, stirring a pot on his stove. "My mom taught me to cook and she had five kids. So when I do cook, I go in!"



Aside from breakfast (usually bacon, egg and cheese on an English muffin), the American Ballet Theatre principal rarely cooks for himself during ABT's seasons. He prefers to "forage" for his lunch and go out or order in for dinner, saving the real cooking for when he has friends or colleagues to feed. "I like to have a lot of people tell me my food is delicious," he quips.


Jim Lafferty

One of his favorite dishes to prepare for friends is chicken pot pie, using his mother's recipe as a base and combining it with one he found on the internet. "Every time I visited her I would make her teach me how to make something," he says of his mother, who passed away last summer. "She was an amazing cook. I know everyone says their mom is a good cook, but actually."

He's not one for being exact with ingredients—he might measure out the milk, add it to the pot, then shrug and pour in more from the quart. "Cooking for me isn't a fancy affair," he says. "It's incredibly personable and casual. It's about getting people you like in one room and having a good time."

His Chicken Pot Pie Recipe:

Jim Lafferty

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb skinless boneless chicken breast
  • 1 cube chicken bouillon
  • 1 cup sliced carrots
  • 1 cup frozen green peas
  • 1/2 cup sliced celery
  • 2/3 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp celery seed
  • 3 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 1/3 cups whole milk
  • dash of hot sauce (Whiteside uses Cholula)
  • 2 unbaked pie crusts (9 inches)
  • 1 egg, separated

Jim Lafferty

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375ºF.
  2. In a large pot, combine chicken, bouillon cube, carrots, peas and celery. Cover with water and boil for 15 minutes. Remove from heat, drain and set aside. Remove chicken, cube or shred, and return to pot.
  3. In a large saucepan over medium heat, cook onions in butter until soft and translucent. Stir in flour, salt, pepper and celery seed. Slowly stir in chicken broth and milk. Add a dash of hot sauce. Simmer over medium-low heat until thick. Add chicken/vegetable mixture and stir.
  4. Place the bottom crust in a nonstick pie pan and fill with chicken mixture. Cover with top crust, seal edges and cut away excess dough. Brush top crust with egg white. Make several small slits in the top to allow steam to escape.
  5. Bake for 35–40 minutes, or until pastry is golden brown and filling is bubbly. Cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Makes: One 9-inch pie

Jim Lafferty

Dance on Broadway
Courtesy Boneau/Bryan-Brown

If "Fosse/Verdon" whet your appetite for the impeccable Gwen Verdon, then Merely Marvelous: The Dancing Genius of Gwen Verdon is the three-course meal you've been craving. The new documentary—available now on Amazon for rental or purchase—dives into the life of the Tony-winning performer and silver-screen star lauded for her charismatic dancing.

Though she's perhaps most well-known today as Bob Fosse's wife and muse, that's not even half of her story. For starters, she'd already won four Tonys before they wed, making her far more famous in the public eye than he was at that point in his career. That's just one of many surprising details we learned during last night's U.S. premiere of Merely Marvelous. Believe us: You're gonna love her even more once you get to know her. Here are eight lesser-known tidbits to get you started.

Keep reading... Show less
What Dancers Eat
Lindsay Thomas

Every dancer knows that how you fuel your body affects how you feel in the studio. Of course, while breakfast is no more magical than any other meal (despite the enduring myth that it's the most important one of the day), showing up to class hangry is a recipe for unproductive studio time.

So what do your favorite dancers eat in the morning to set themselves up for a busy rehearsal or performance day?

Keep reading... Show less
News
Simon Soong, Courtesy DDT

When it comes to dance in the U.S., companies in the South often find themselves overlooked—sometimes even by the presenters in their own backyard. That's where South Arts comes in. This year, the regional nonprofit launched Momentum, an initiative that will provide professional development, mentorship, touring grants and residencies to five Southern dance companies.

Keep reading... Show less
News
Alice Pennefather, Courtesy ROH

You ever just wish that Kenneth MacMillan's iconic production of Romeo and Juliet could have a beautiful love child with the 1968 film starring Olivia Hussey? (No, not Baz Luhrmann's version. We are purists here.)

Wish granted: Today, the trailer for a new film called Romeo and Juliet: Beyond Words was released, featuring MacMillan's choreography and with what looks like all the cinematic glamour we could ever dream of:

Keep reading... Show less

mailbox

Get Dance Magazine in your inbox