Puffs of Chicken

A nineteenth-century dish from a great Northumbrian house. These puffs should be served with a border of small heaps of three different vegetables: diced carrots, peas, french beans, sweetcorn or asparagus tips, for example.


  • 4 chicken breasts, skinned
  • 1 lb (½ kg) puff pastry
  • 2 tablespoons rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • 2 tablespoons dry white wine
  • Beaten egg, for glazing


Only the fleshy part (the “supreme”) should be used from each chicken breast. Cut this free of the bones; the trimmings can be used for stock.

Roll out the pastry and allow to rest for 10 minutes. Mix the rosemary, pepper and salt and rub over each supreme on both sides.

Cut the pastry into 4 large squares. Lay a chicken supreme in the centre of each square. Pour a little lemon juice and wine over each. Fold the pastry to form a neat envelope and seal by pinching the moistened edges together. Brush over with the egg and bake in a hot oven, 425°F (220°C, Gas Mark 7), for 35 minutes. If the pastry is becoming too brown, cover lightly with foil and reduce the heat a little.