Chicken a la King made with poached chicken, mushrooms, sweet peppers, and heavy cream is a casserole dish the whole family is sure to love. Rich and creamy, it’s delicious over rice or pasta.
Chicken is definitely my favorite meat ingredient. I love that it is so convenient to use and versatile enough to be enjoyed in many ways. The boneless and skinless breast parts which have very little fat can, however, prove tricky to prepare. There’s but a fine line between moist, succulent pieces and dry, stringy meat.
For my stir-fries, I have taken to velveting for super tender chicken. For sandwiches and casserole dishes such as this chicken a la king, I like taking the extra step of poaching.
Poaching is a form of cooking where eggs, fish, fruit, and poultry are covered and gently simmered in liquid until cooked through. This low heat, moist-cooking method prevents food from overcooking too quickly and helps to retain moisture. The chicken comes out juicy, flavorful and the perfect slate to the rich and creamy white sauce.
Generously studded with lightly sauteed button mushrooms and sweet peppers, this chicken a la king is the yummiest thing you can put over steamed rice, noodles or toasted bread.
BTW, remember our discussion about boiling milk or cream? Low and gentle is the key here, guys. After adding the cream, simmer on low heat so the sauce doesn’t curdle or separate. Enjoy!
Chicken a la King
- 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper corns
- 3 cloves garlic, peeled and pounded
- 2 bay leaves
- 1/2 cup dry sherry wine
- cool water
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 1 onion, peeled and chopped
- 4 sweet peppers, stemmed, cored and chopped
- 4 ounces fresh button mushrooms, sliced thinly
- 2 cups broth (reserved from poaching the chicken)
- 1 cup heavy cream
- salt and pepper to taste
In a large pot, arrange chicken in a single layer. Add salt, peppercorns, garlic, and bay leaves.
Add wine and enough water to cover chicken to about 1-inch high (I used about 6 cups).
Over medium-high heat, bring to a boil, skimming scum that floats on top. When liquid begins to boil, reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for about 10 to 15 minutes or until center of chicken reads 165 F.
Immediately remove chicken from pot and allow to cool to touch. Cut into 1-inch cubes. Strain broth and reserve about 2 cups. Discard aromatics.
In a sauce pot over medium heat, heat butter until melted. Add onions and cook until limp.
Add sweet peppers and mushrooms and cook, stirring regularly, until softened.
Add flour and cook, stirring regularly, for about 2 to 3 minutes or until lightly browned.
Add reserved broth and heavy cream, whisking regularly until smooth and well-combined.
Add chicken. Lower heat, cover and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until sauce is thickened.
Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve hot over rice, noodles or toasted bread.