Chicken a la King
- 3 ribs celery, thinly sliced on bias
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 2 carrots, thinly sliced on bias
- 1 fresh bay leaf
- Salt and pepper
- 1/2 red bell pepper, thinly sliced into strips
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 3 heaping tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 2 1/2 cups chicken stock
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
- 1/2 pound thin asparagus, cut into 1-inch pieces on a long angle
- 1 cup frozen peas
- 2 tablespoons fresh tarragon, chopped
- 2 packages (4 to 6 each) puff-pastry shells
- 1 can fried thin Chinese noodles (or leftovers from your last Chinese takeout)
- 2 tablespoons chives, finely chopped
Place a large, deep-sided skillet over medium-high heat with EVOO, 2 turns of the pan. Add the celery, onions, carrots and bay leaf and season with a little salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, for about 7 to 8 minutes. Add the red bell pepper and continue to cook for an additional 2 to 3 minutes. Scoot the veggies over to the sides and add the butter to the center of the skillet. Once the butter has melted, add the flour and cook for about 1 minute. Whisk in the white wine, chicken stock and cream. Bring the liquids up to a simmer, then add the chicken pieces. Bring back up to a simmer and add the asparagus. Simmer the mixture until the chicken is cooked through and the asparagus is tender, about 10 to 12 minutes more. Cool and store for a make-ahead meal. Reheat over medium heat.
To serve: Add the peas and tarragon to the a la King mixture and stir to combine. Adjust seasoning.
Preheat the oven according to package directions for the puff-pastry shells. Arrange the shells on a nonstick baking sheet, then place in oven. Bake until golden, remove from oven and let cool.
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