Cherry Chicken Tart Recipe

Cherry Chicken Tart Recipe Recipe

The filling of this tart is as delicious as it sounds. Cherry roasted chicken breasts are shredded into fairly large pieces and mixed into a creamy sauce.

The tart is sealed with a thin layer of Monterey Jack cheese. I made the flaky crust with fresh herbs: chives, creeping red thyme and Italian parsley. You could prepare the crust in advance and store it in the freezer until you're ready to bake. I served the savory tart with a large arugula salad to complete the flavorful meal. 

Reminder: I'll be giving a cooking demonstration (complete with samples!) of one of my potato creations at the Los Altos library. On Saturday, May 25th, starting at 2 pm, I will be talking about my first cookbook, Haute Potato, and cooking, and we'll have the opportunity to chat afterwards. This event is free and open to the public and my cookbook will also be available for purchase and signing. So as to be able to serve enough food for everyone, I would greatly appreciate an RSVP so you may be added to the guest list: send an email to events{at}PhamFatale{dot}com with "Haute Potato Reservation" as the subject, indicating the number of people you'll be coming with. Please spread the word; the more the merrier. I'm so excited, can't wait to meet you!

Event Type: Adult Program
Age Group(s): Adult, Teen
Date: 5/25/2013
Start Time: 2:00 PM
Santa Clara County Library District
Los Altos Library |  www.sccl.org
13 S. San Antonio Rd. | Los Altos, CA 94024 

Ingredients

Yields: 8 servings

1½ cups + 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1½ teaspoons sea salt
12 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, diced
1 egg
3-4 tablespoons ice water
¼ cup Italian parsley, chopped
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1½ tablespoons fresh creeping red thyme (or regular thyme), chopped
1 tablespoon garlic chives, snipped
6 tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves garlic, finely minced
2 boneless chicken breasts, with the skin on (about 1 pound)
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons papaya paste (see tips)
1 (12-ounce) jar dark Morello cherries (see tips)
3 tablespoons Bellindora balsamic cherry vinegar
1 tablespoon coarse-grained mustard
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups milk, warmed
¼ teaspoon nutmeg, freshly grated
½ teaspoon black pepper, freshly cracked
¼ teaspoon turmeric
2 tablespoons Monterey Jack cheese, freshly grated


Directions

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

For the tart shell:

In a mixing bowl, combine 1¼ cups flour and ¾ teaspoon sea salt in a small bowl and place in the freezer for 30 minutes. Remove from the freezer and add the 8 tablespoons of cold butter, 1 egg and ice water. Using a pastry dough blender, blend until the mixture becomes a thick dough. Add ½ tablespoon chives, 1 teaspoon thyme, 2 tablespoons parsley and garlic powder. Make sure not to over-mix it. 

Dust a flat surface with the remaining flour. Place the dough and roll it out into 2 (11-inch) disks.

Transfer to 2 non-stick, round, loose-bottomed, (9-inch) tart molds lined with parchment paper. Following the curve of the mold, crimp the dough against the edge. Leave a little excess above the edge because the dough will settle a bit in the oven. Prick the dough with a fork. Chill in the refrigerator for about 20-30 minutes. 

Making the cherry chicken:

Preheat the oven to 400°F.

Remove the fat around the bottom of the breasts if there is any. Wash the chicken breasts and pat them dry using paper towels. Cover the chicken with papaya paste. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon oil. Season with cayenne pepper, salt and pepper. Rub evenly. 

In a large, non-stick pan, heat 1 tablespoon of oil. Add the garlic. When it's fragrant and slightly golden, transfer to a blender. 

In the blender, combine the garlic, mustard, ¼ cup of the juice from the cherry jar, balsamic cherry vinegar, 1 teaspoon thyme and turmeric. Blend until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Add ¼ cup olive oil and briefly pulse 2-3 times until well emulsified. Pour into a baking dish and cover with 3 ounces cherries. Place a small rack in the bottom of a baking dish and place chicken breasts. Bake for 30-35 minutes. Remove from the oven, then loosely cover the dish with a sheet of aluminum foil and let sit for 15 minutes. Separate and tear the meat into large, long pieces, reserving the pan drippings. 

For the sauce: 

In the same non-stick pan, melt 4 tablespoons butter. Add 5 tablespoons flour and stir until it becomes a thick paste. Slowly add the milk and the pan drippings, stirring constantly until thickened. Add the remaining chopped thyme, nutmeg and parsley. Turn off the heat. Add the chicken pieces. Mix well. 

Assembly time:

Fill the tart shells with the chicken mixture. Top with the remaining cherries. Finish with a thin layer of cheese. Bake at 375°F for 15 minutes, then lower the temperature to 350°F and cook for another 25 minutes until golden. Finally broil for about 2 minutes to get a nice golden, cheesy top.

Remove from the oven and allow to rest for at least 10 minutes.

Serve warm with a green salad.

Bon appétit!


Tips

I used Bellindora balsamic cherry vinegar.

I used Monterey Jack cheese, which is a semi-soft cheese that tastes pretty bland, because I didn't want to over-power the taste of the cherry chicken filling. You could substitute other mild cheeses such as Muenster or mozzarella.  

You can find dark Morello cherries at Trader Joe's.

How to make papaya paste (great meat tenderizer): Peel a green papaya. Grind the cubed papaya with seeds in a mini food processor; place about 2 teaspoons of papaya paste per slot of an ice-cube tray and freeze them. Transfer the ice-cubes into sealable plastic bags and place back in the freezer.

Published By: Jacqueline Pham on May 8, 2013.


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