Saturday, July 26, 2014

Tarragon-Cream Chicken and Polenta PotPies



I was looking up recipes a while back and found Tarragon-Cream Chicken and Polenta Potpies on the Rachel Ray site. It sounded great, looked great, so why not?. For starters, I'd like to say that everything about this recipe is a bit.... "off". It's in the "30 minute meals"... it took me 2 hours. It has a point where it says the chicken will fully cook in about 4 minutes. That took 15. It claims this will fit in 4 (oven-usable) soup bowls (....I'm thinkin' ramekins here)... it completely filled my 9x13 casserole dish.

Add in that the recipe is actually fairly confusing for a "4-step" recipe. I re-read things numerous times just to find myself guessing at what I was doing. I'm not a newbie to cooking... I've cooked for 25 years, followed recipes for 21 years. This, in my mind, means I should probably be able to do a 4-step recipe with ease.

The recipe didn't turn out properly and was too soupy. Also, my husband was over-zealous in his attempt to "help" me and he made our polenta for me. It was supposed to be quick-cook polenta, but I didn't see any. That aside, "quick cook" anything usually has stuff in it I don't want my family consuming. I figured I'd just cook the polenta most of the way (can you even make it 'al dente'?) and then add when called for to finish cooking.

Well, it was supposed to cook within the cream/broth mixture.... but hubby cooked it in water. We ended up with a very soupy dish, but the polenta part, while it wasn't browned like it called for, was fine (ironically).

I also about died when I grabbed gruyere in the grocery store and saw that a tiny bit was $12. I grabbed swiss instead, and added 1 1/2c.




I still call dinner a win, as nearly everyone liked the taste. (I say nearly everyone because I discovered that I don't care for Tarragon... but everything else about it was great.) I just think the entire recipe should be re-written, and I will do that since there was a request for it by hubby.

There was enough of that dish to feed our family for 3 days. Not bad! No, I haven't re-written the recipe yet... but hubby and I both had the same idea to alter the leftovers, so we did that tonight. Hubby flipped the leftovers into a smaller dish, and we took a tube of (Trader Joe's) Crescent rolls and laid them across the top (well, it used to be the bottom) of the casserole, and baked until done (so it was reheated and ready to eat!). Tasty.
 
Tarragon-Cream Chicken and Polenta Potpies
Makes: 4 servings Prep: 5 mins

Ingredients:
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 ribs celery with leafy greens, chopped
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1 1/2 pounds chicken tenders, chopped
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup quick-cooking polenta
  • 1 cup shredded gruyere cheese
  • 5 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 6 sprigs fresh tarragon, leaves chopped and stems discarded
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
Directions:

1) In a deep skillet, heat the EVOO, 2 turns of the pan, over medium-high heat. Add the carrots, onion and celery, season with salt and pepper and cook until softened, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the peas and chicken and cook until the chicken is cooked through, about 4 minutes; set aside.

2) Preheat the broiler. In a small, heavy saucepan, bring 1 cup chicken broth and 1/2 cup cream to a boil. Add the polenta and cook, whisking, for 3 minutes. Lower the heat, stir in the gruyere until melted and set aside.

3) Push the chicken and vegetables off to the side of the skillet. Over medium heat, add the butter to melt, then stir in the flour; cook for 1 minute. Gradually whisk in the remaining 2 cups chicken broth and 1/2 cup cream, stir in the chicken and vegetables and bring to a simmer. Stir in the tarragon and mustard; season with salt and pepper.

4) Place four ovenproof soup bowls on a baking sheet and pour in the chicken mixture. Scoop some polenta on top to cover completely. Broil until the tops are browned, 2 to 3 minutes.

Re-written, slightly altered recipe by Thoughts Of Fluff
Tarragon-Cream Chicken and Polenta Potpies
Makes: 4 servings Prep: 5 mins

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 ribs celery with leafy greens, chopped
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1 1/2 pounds chicken tenders, chopped
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup quick-cooking polenta
  • 1 cup shredded gruyere cheese
  • 5 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 6 sprigs fresh tarragon, leaves chopped and stems discarded
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
Directions:

 1) In a deep skillet heat the oil. Season carrots, onion, and celery with salt and pepper and add to heated oil. Cook 8-10 minutes or until softened. Add peas and chicken, cooking until chicken is cooked through (10-15 minutes).

2) Preheat the broiler. In a small, heavy saucepan, bring 1c. chicken broth and 1/2c. cream to a boil. Add the polenta and cook whisking for 3 minutes. Lower the heat and stir in the cheese until melted. Set aside.

3) Push chicken and veggies to one side of the skillet and turn burner to medium. In the open area, add butter. Once melted, stir in the flour, cooking for 1 minute. Slowly whisk in the remaining chicken broth and 1/2c. cream. Stir in the chicken and veggie mixture until fully incorporated. Bring to a simmer. Stir in the tarragon and mustard; season with salt and pepper.

4) In ovenproof soup bowls (or an ovenproof casserole dish), pour in chicken mixture. (If using soup bowls place on a baking sheet to prevent spillage). Scoop polenta on top of mixture until completely covered. Broil until the tops are browned (about 2-3 minutes).




Disclaimer: Thoughts of Fluff was not compensated for this post. All opinions are my own and may differ from those of your own. Post contains affiliate links.

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