Creamed Tarragon Chicken and Bacon Vol-au-Vents

Creamed Tarragon Chicken and Bacon Vol-au-Vents served on a white platterPuff pastries filled with a creamy, herb-flecked sauce get topped with fresh tarragon for a savory treat.

Creamed Tarragon Chicken and Bacon Vol-au-Vents
  • 48 ready-to-bake round puff pastry shells*
  • 1 (16-ounce) package thick-cut bacon, cut into ½-inch pieces
  • 1½ teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 3 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs, chopped
  • 1½ cups finely chopped red onion
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter
  • 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
  • ½ teaspoon ground red pepper
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Garnish: fresh tarragon leaves, fresh thyme leaves, thinly sliced green onions
  1. Bake pastry shells according to package directions until golden brown and puffed. Use tip of a knife to remove lids; discard or reserve for another use. Remove any uncooked pastry on inside of shells by scraping with tines of a fork. Set shells aside.
  2. In a heavy-duty Dutch oven, cook bacon over medium heat, stirring of en, until crisp, about 10 minutes. Remove using a slotted spoon, reserving 2 tablespoons drippings in pan; let drain on paper towels.
  3. Sprinkle 1 teaspoon salt on chicken. In Dutch oven with reserved bacon drippings, cook chicken over medium heat, stirring often, until cooked through, about 8 to 10 minutes. (Chicken doesn’t have to be brown.) Remove chicken from pan using a slotted spoon; set aside.
  4. In same pan, cook onions, celery, and garlic over medium heat, stirring often, until onions are soft, about 10 minutes. Remove and set aside.
  5. In same pan, heat butter over medium heat until melted. Add flour, whisking until mixture begins to brown, about 2 to 3 minutes. Whisk in stock and cream. Bring to a boil over high heat, whisking constantly; reduce heat to medium-low and simmer. Add cooked chicken, bacon, and onion mixture; cook until mixture begins to thicken, about 6 to 8 minutes. Stir in tarragon, thyme, red pepper, black pepper, and remaining ½ teaspoon salt.
  6. For each serving, spoon about ⅓ cup chicken mixture into each of 2 pastry shells. Garnish with tarragon, thyme, and green onions, if desired.
*We used Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry Shells.

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