Childhood Chicken

    The other day I was describing to a friend a chicken dish I frequently make. She asked me where I got the recipe and I said I just made it up based off the flavors of something my mom used to make when I was little. And since I've been feeling more than a little homesick, below you will find the recipe to my own version of my mom's chicken because, understandably, I was too young at the time to carefully observe what she put in it. It's funny how certain smells and tastes can remind you so distinctly of a specific time in your life. This meal reminds of a very good one, so when I'm lonely I make it and think of the people who I care about many, many miles away.

    What You Need:

    2 pounds chicken, defrosted and cut into small cubes

    4 Tbs cream cheese

    crushed red pepper flakes, oregano, salt, pepper, and garlic powder

    1 small onion, chopped

    4 cloves garlic, chopped

    1/3 cup cooking sherry

    3-5 Tbs milk, cream, or half and half

    What You Do:

    Saute the onion and garlic in a skillet until golden brown

    Add the spices

    Add the chicken and saute until the chicken is almost cooked through

    Add the sherry and stir

    Add the cream cheese and stir to combine

    Add milk/cream as needed according to how dry the mixture is

    You can finish the dish off with chopped chives if you'd like

    Serve With:

    You can serve this meal over rice or with warm Italian bread...

    ... but perhaps a lovelier treatment (and a more impressive one) would be to package it into rounds of puff pastry - forming a pocket. Brush the tops with egg wash and a little salt and bake according to the directions on the puff pastry package. This makes for a gorgeous entertaining meal. You can form the pockets into any shape you want - I like triangles because I think they look super classy. Don't forget to cut air holes into the top so they don't burst from the steam in the oven!

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