Chicken, Butternut Squash and Swiss Cheese Pocket Pies

Chicken, Butternut Squash & Swiss Cheese Pocket Pies

Behold these beauties with their golden brown crust and savory middles. Flaky pie crust surrounds a stuffing of chicken, butternut squash, baby spinach and Swiss cheese.

My version of chicken pot pie. A modern reinvention.

Chicken, Butternut & Swiss Cheese Pies

Pocket pies have a charm factor a big pie can’t compete with. Mostly ’cause you can hold them in your hand and eat them, no utensils required.

Secondly, because they’re totally cute. I mean, just look at them. Who would turn them down?

Thirdly, my favorite reason of all, because they have more crust to go around. Every single bite is packed full of buttery crust. Not one bite will be without unlike a normal-sized pie where you run out of crust and are left with a pile of filling. What on earth do you do with that pile of filling anyways?

The pie crust-lover in me did a happy dance. All while holding a pie.

In each hand.

Chicken, Butternut Squash & Swiss Cheese Pocket Pies

Chicken, Butternut Squash and Swiss Cheese Pocket Pies

Rating: 51

Prep Time: 40 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour

Yield: 8 pocket pies

Chicken, Butternut Squash and Swiss Cheese Pocket Pies

Flaky, buttery pocket pies with a stuffing of chicken, butternut squash, baby spinach and Swiss cheese.

Ingredients:

Crust:
2 cups white whole wheat or all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup shortening or butter (or a mix of both), chilled
7 tablespoons ice water
Filling:
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
3 cups butternut squash, diced small
1 small yellow onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
coarse salt and fresh black pepper
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning, crushed between fingertips
3/4 pound chicken breasts, cut in bite-size pieces
2 cups baby spinach, chopped
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 heaping cup shredded Swiss Cheese (Gruyere or Emmental)
1 egg, beaten
poppy seeds, sesame seeds, parmesan cheese or coarse salt, optional

Instructions:

  1. Whisk the flour and salt together in a large bowl. With a pastry blender, two knives used scissors fashion, or your fingertips, cut or rub half of the fat into the flour mixture until it resembles cornmeal. Take the other half and cut or rub it in until the largest pieces are the size of a dime, or flattened peas.
  2. Sprinkle the ice water, one tablespoon at a time, over the flour/fat mixture. With a fork, toss the mixture that you’ve just moistened and push it to one side. Continue until the dough is just moist enough to hold together. Form into a ball and cut it in half then flatten the halves into two disks.
  3. Wrap the two pieces of dough and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before using.
  4. Meanwhile in a large skillet heat 2 tablespoons of oil over medium heat. Add squash, onion and garlic. Season with salt, pepper and Italian seasoning. Cook until squash is tender stirring every few minutes. Remove the mixture to a bowl or platter and set aside.
  5. Season the chicken well with salt and pepper. Add the remaining tablespoon oil to the pan then the chicken. Brown on all sides and cook through. Add the squash mixture back to the pan along with the spinach and heavy cream. Stir gently together. Remove from heat. Stir in Swiss cheese. Taste and season as needed with salt and pepper.
  6. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  7. On a floured surface roll out the disks to 9-10 inches in diameter. Use a 6" cookie or biscuit cutter (or a 6" plate, bowl or cup and a sharp paring knife) to cut out 16 circles, re-rolling the scraps of crust as needed.
  8. Place a heaping 1/4 cup filling in the center of eight of the circles.
  9. Brush the beaten egg around the edges and center the remaining crust circles on top. Press and pinch the edges together with a fork all the way around then turn the edges of the crust up. Brush all over with egg. Sprinkle with seeds, a little parmesan or coarse salt.
  10. Use a spatula to place the pies on the parchment lined baking sheet. Bake about 20 minutes until golden all over. Serve warm.

Notes:

Pie crust adapted from King Arthur Flour

http://www.cinnamonspiceandeverythingnice.com/chicken-butternut-squash-and-swiss-cheese-pocket-pies/

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