Chicken Vol-au-Vents is a cooked puff pastry shell filled with chicken cooked in a savory gravy. It only takes 30 minutes to prepare from start to yummy finish. French for “windblown,” a vol-au-vent is a small, hollow case of puff pastry, with the top cut out to allow for a filling.
I used the following ingredients for this delicious dish: Chicken breasts, low sodium chicken broth, Worcestershire sauce, Madeira, Bisto, unsalted butter, all-purpose flour, salt, freshly ground black pepper, and puff pastry shells. What is Bisto you ask? It’s a British meat-flavored gravy powder that I use for thickening gravy. I use it all the time. If your local supermarket has an international food section, look in the British section because you just might fin it there. If you don’t have Bisto, however, you can use cornstarch instead.
Making the Chicken Vol au Vents
To make the Chicken Vol-au-Vents, I started by cutting two chicken breasts into 1-inch cubes. Then I combined the chicken broth, Worcestershire sauce, Madeira, and Bisto in a measuring cup, and set it aside.
Next, I sautéd the chicken in melted butter for 7 or 8 minutes. When all of the pink had disappeared from the chicken, I added the flour, salt, and pepper, and stirred to combine everything. I cooked this mixture for a minute or so.
Then, I added the chicken broth mixture to the chicken, and heated the chicken over medium heat until it was bubbly and thickened, stirring constantly.
I lowered the heat to low, and let the chicken mixture continue to cook while I prepared the puff pastry shells according to the package directions.
Generally, I serve Chicken Vol-au-vents with mashed potatoes, and some sort of vegetable. Tonight, the vegetable of choice was mushy peas. Also, I spooned some of the chicken mixture on the mashed potatoes. Yum!
For another delicious recipe using puff pastry shells check out my recipe for Cornish Pasties
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- 1 ½ cups low sodium chicken broth
- 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1 Tablespoon Madeira or sherry
- 4 teaspoons Bisto (See Note 1)
- 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts cut into 1-inch cubes
- 1 Tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Freshly ground pepper to taste
- 4 puff pastry shells
- Optional: Chopped green onions for garnish.
- Preheat oven to 425° F.
- Combine chicken broth, Worcestershire sauce, Madeira and Bisto in a bowl or measuring cup; mix well. Set aside.
- Melt butter in a heavy saucepan. Sauté chicken 7 to 8 minutes over medium heat, or until all pink is gone. Add flour, salt and pepper; cook 1 to 2 minutes. Add chicken broth mixture slowly. Cook, stirring constantly over medium heat until thickened and bubbly. Reduce heat to low and continue cooking 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, cook puff pastry shells according to package directions - around 20 minutes at 425° F - until puffed and golden brown. During the last five minutes of cooking, remove the small top circle to allow for browning of the interior.
- Divide chicken evenly among 4 pastry shells and serve immediately. Garnish with chopped green onions if desired.
- Yield: 4 servings.
Chula's Expert Tips
- Bisto is a British meat-flavored gravy powder. If Bisto is unavailable, cornstarch can be substituted.