Saturday, May 21, 2005

Savory Chicken Pocket Pies

Savory Chicken Pocket Pies (Adapted from Lucinda Scala Quinn)

For the dough

8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt

For the filling

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/3 cup chopped celery
1/3 cup chopped carrot
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 ounce (about 1/4 cup) fresh grated Parmesan cheese
1 heaping cup shredded cooked chicken meat
1 large egg
1 tablespoon water

To prepare the dough

In a food processor, add butter, cream cheese and cream - process until smooth and combined. Add flour and salt - pulse mixture just until combined. Scoop mixture out onto a lightly floured surface and use your hands to finishing bringing the dough together. Evenly divide dough into 2 pieces, then flatten each into a disk - cover both with plastic wrap and chill for at least 30 minutes.

To prepare the filling

In a medium skillet, melt butter over medium-high. Stir in onion, celery and carrots - season with salt, then cook until the vegetables begin to soften, about 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in flour and cook for 1 minute. Add chicken broth - cook, stirring, until the mixture thickens, about 2 minutes. Stir in cooked chicken and Parmesan cheese - remove from the heat and scoop mixture into a bowl. Place into the refrigerator to quickly cool down.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Remove dough from the refrigerator. On a lightly floured surface, roll out each piece to a large circle. Using a bowl, about 5" across, cut out as many circles as you can. Gather all dough scraps, reroll and cut out as many circles as you can once more.

Remove chilled filling from the refrigerator and place roughly 1/4 cup of the filling on one side of a dough circle. Lightly wet the edges of the dough with the water, then fold the unfilled side over to form a half circle - seal the edges together with a fork. Repeat process until all the filling and dough circles have been used.

Place the assembled pies onto a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Place into the refrigerator and chill for 10 to 15 minutes.

In a small bowl, whisk together egg and 1 tablespoon water to make an egg wash.

Remove pan from the refrigerator and prick the top of each pie twice with a fork. Brush the egg wash over each individual pie. Place pan into the oven and bake until golden brown, about 18 to 25 minutes. Remove and let cool 5 minutes before serving.

Makes about 10 pies.

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