Monday, January 6, 2014

Delicious Chicken Pillows with Creamy Parmesan Sauce

What's not to love about chicken pillows. Tender shredded chicken, cream cheese, soft pillowy, butter rolls topped with a creamy gravy. I have never met one that I haven't enjoyed. However, taking a little extra time to make my own rolls rather than using the Pillsbury canned crescent rolls and making the creamy gravy from scratch without harming a can of cream of anything soup took this delicious meal to the next level for me. The rolls were flavorful and more substantial than the usual thinner crescent kind. The gravy...Ooooh the gravy. Well you will just have to try it for yourself. I have really been trying for a couple of years now to stay away from condensed soups of any kind. They are full of preservatives and other junk and I...well I just try to avoid them where and when possible. I was thrilled when Mel from Melskitchencafe posted this recipe. Though, I didn't use her roll recipe for this recipe, her idea was genius. I feel like chicken pillows is a recipe that takes a little more work anyway. So I figure, if I'm going to take the time to make them, why not take the time to really make them. I took these to a friend and her family for dinner last night and then had my brother and his wife over for dinner also. I think my brother had 4, maybe 5 pillows. Needless to say, everyone loved these and I was happy I took the extra time.
Delicious Chicken Pillows with Creamy Parmesan Sauce For the rolls: Note- I found that using this roll recipe along with the chicken I could get about 20 chicken pillows total. 1/2 cup milk (I use Vitamin D or full fat milk) 1/2 cup buttermilk 1/3 cup sugar 1 tbsp yeast 1/3 cup oil 2 eggs beaten 3 1/2 cups flour 2/3 tsp salt Put milk and buttermilk into a glass measuring cup and microwave approximately 35 seconds. Add sugar and yeast to milks and stir until sugar is somewhat dissolved. Put that mixture into bread maker. Then add all other ingredients into bread maker and hit dough cycle. This can also be done without the breadmaker in a kitchenaid or other standard mixer. If not using a bread machine, you just need to let your dough rise for about 45-1 hour after your dough is complete. For the chicken: 4 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 2 1/2 – 3 pounds) 2 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, light or regular, softened to room temperature 1 teaspoon garlic powder 1 teaspoon salt I like to put my chicken breasts in the crockpot with a little chicken or vegetable broth and some seasoning and cook it on low for about 6 hours. Once cooked and cooled I then shred it. When the chicken is cooked and cooled slightly, shred or cut into small pieces. In a medium bowl combine the chicken, cream cheese, garlic powder and salt and mix until well combined. Set aside or refrigerate until ready to use. Rolls and coatingb> 1 batch buttery crescent rolls 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted 2 cups panko bread crumbs 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese Once the cycle is done I rolled out my dough into the biggest rectangle I could get. I added a little bit of flour to the dough so that it wasn't too sticky. Once I had my rectangle I just kind of eyeballed how many smalled rectangles I could get out of my large rectangle and using my pizza cuter cut my large rectangle into about 20 smaller ones. I then took each smaller rectangle one by one and filled it with the chicken mixture (approx. 1/4 cup of chicken mixture per roll), rolled it up, pinched the seams and set it aside. When all the chicken pillows have been formed, combine the panko crumbs and Parmesan cheese in a bowl or flat dish (like a pie plate). One by one, dip each chicken pillow in the melted butter and roll in the panko/Parmesan mixture. Place seam side down about 2 inches apart on baking trays lined with parchment paper, a silpat liner or lightly greased. Cream sauce/gravy: 3 tablespoons butter 3 tablespoons flour 1 chicken bouillon cube or 1 teaspoon chicken bouillon granules 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon black pepper 1 1/2 cups milk 3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese 1 cup sour cream, light or regular In a medium saucepan, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour, cooking over medium heat for 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly, until the mixture is golden and bubbly. Slowly whisk in the milk, stirring in the chicken bouillon, salt and pepper once the milk has been completely added. Stir constantly over medium heat until the sauce thickens and bubbles, about 5-10 minutes, taking care to adjust the heat accordingly so the sauce doesn’t burn on the bottom. Stir in the Parmesan cheese and cook, stirring, until the cheese is melted. Remove the sauce from the heat and stir in the sour cream. Thin the sauce with a little milk if needed. I served our chicken pillows with a little mashed carrot and parsnip, rice pilaf and corn. It was a delicious meal and one I am sure I will make again...soon!

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