One day, not too long ago, a beautiful Italian couple showed up to deliver me two of their pasta sauces and a bottle of their Italian dressing.
Nicholas and Cindy Scaffeta are the owners of Nicoli’s Italian-American Steakhouse in Anadarko, Oklahoma and are second generation restaurant owners. Nic’s parents, using the recipes his grandfather Luigi brought with him from Italy, owned and operated Luigi’s restaurant in Chickasha. Their recipes are made with all-natural ingredients and no preservatives are added, and this includes their alfredo sauce, which must be refrigerated, even when unopened (due to the no preservatives thing). Please visit their online site to see where you can find these wonderful sauces at scaffettas.com.
I knew that I wanted to do something other than pasta with this alfredo sauce, but I must confess, I did open the jar and taste it, as I have a penchant for alfredo sauce, and I was curious at the thickness of this sauce. Store bought alfredo sauces, in the past have been runny and just, well…not very good.
One taste and I thought..oh my gosh, this tastes just like mine! Delicious!
So I began to think, and for some reason the words “Chicken Alfredo Pot Pie” popped into my head. But as I continued to think, I knew I didn’t want to do the traditional peas and carrots version, and I wanted an Italian flare, so let me show you where my crazy mind took me.
I will give you a teaser to go ahead and set out 2 sheets of puff pastry dough to thaw for about 30 minutes. Puff pastry spells delicious any way you use it!
I took four chicken breasts and put them in a covered skillet with 4 cups of water. I just wanted to poach these, or cook them in the water, so they would retain a lot of moisture.
I then turned the heat up to medium-high and when the water began to boil, I turned it down and let it simmer for about ten minutes, then turned off the heat and let it stay covered in the hot water for an additional 15 minutes.
While that was cooking, I moved onto step two.
In a large skillet, I started sauteeing a whole package of sliced button mushrooms in a little olive oil.
I used about 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil and cooked them over medium heat just until they began to soften up and get all glossy and wonderful and juicy.
Then I dumped in an entire five ounce package of baby spinach and one grated large-size carrot.
Finally, I chopped up three heaping tablespoons of sundried tomatoes packed in oil.
And dumped them right into the pan.
Now, it was time for me to remove my beautifully poached chicken breasts, and place them into the pan. Then I just shredded them up by using two forks.
Then, I stirred all of this together just until the spinach got a little wilty and droopy looking.
Now, I was prepared to spoon these into my ramekins. But Mr. Wonderful, being the wonderfully particular person that he is, suggested that we take a spatalu and evenly divide the mixture into fourths.
Isn’t he wonderful? And we filled up some oven-safe ramekins with each fourth.
Mine measure about 4 inches across and 2 inches deep and are perfect for individual pot pies. Don’t have any ramekins? Just forget the four portion thing and spoon everything into a 8 x 8 square baking dish. Your job will be that much easier!
Now I spooned some of the lovely alfredo sauce over top of my mixture and evened it out a bit. I used about one-fourth of a cup, or maybe a little more, and at this point, I’d probably suggest to just mix it all together in the skillet first with the meat/veggie mixture and then divide it into fourths. It just might be easier that way.
Hey, we learn as we go here at Dishin & Dishes!
(If you can’t find a good bottled sauce, here is the recipe to my homemade alfredo sauce. Just leave out the cajun spice).
Now if you’re making this in an 8x 8 dish, you can just simply thaw one sheet of puff pastry dough and place it over top of your dish. But since we did individual pot pies, I turned this task over to Mr. Wonderful, cuz he’s the pastry guy in this relationship. He turned the ramekins upside down on the puff pastry and using our pizza cutter, he cut the crust for each with an extra one-inch extra margin.
We had to use both sheets, and cut the circles in opposite corners to make four crusts. And we saved the scraps to use on a cobbler or another dish later!
Now I placed the puff pastry dough over top of one of the ramekins. I was going to make mine simple and rustic.
But them Mr. Wonderfully Fancy made his look better, so then it was on.
Okay I think he won. But don’t tell him okay?
Make sure you cut some slits in the top of the pie, to let the steam escape and thus keep your pie from blowing up, or whatever happens to pies that you don’t cut slits in.
Pop these into a 350º oven for about 30 minutes or until the top is completely golden and flaky and gorgeous-looking. It will vary according to your oven.
Get a spoon and enjoy one of these delicious babies.
- 4 chicken breasts
- 3 T. Olive oil
- 1 small container sliced mushrooms
- 1 5 oz. container fresh baby spinach
- 1 large carrot, peeled and shredded
- 3 T. (heaping) sundried tomatoes packed in oil
- 1- 1/ ½ c. Scaffetta's jarred alfredo sauce
- 2 sheets puff pastry dough, thawed and rolled out
- Put chicken breasts in skillet, pour in 4 cups of water, cover and cook on high until water begins to bubble, then reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to continue to cook in the heated water (still covered) for 15 more minutes.
- In separate skillet, saute mushrooms in olive oil over medium heat until browning, juicy and glossy.
- If they dry out add a little more olive oil.
- Peel carrot and shred or julianne.
- Chop sundried tomatoes.
- Add in spinach, carrots and sundried tomatoes to the mushroom skillet and cook until spinach wilts about 2 minutes.
- Add in poached chicken breasts and use 2 forks to pull apart and shred.
- Stir all together.
- Add in alfredo sauce and mix well.
- Divide mixture with spatula into 4 even portions by making a cross in it.
- Spoon each portion into individual 4-5 inch ramekins.
- Cut puff pastry with knife or pizza cutter by placing an empty ramekin upside down and cutting puff pastry one inch large than the ramekin opening.
- Place puff pastry circle on top of ramekin and pinch to seal around edges.
- Cut 2-3 slits in top of pastry to vent.
- Bake at 350º for 25-30 minutes or until puff pastry is completely browned and flaky on top.
And, if you will, please leave a comment as I love to hear your thoughts!
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