Chicken à la King

Preparation info

  • Serves


Appears in

Everything on the Table

Everything on the Table

By Colman Andrews

Published 1992

  • About

You can call this dish “diced chicken in egg-thickened white-pepper sherry-cream sauce with pimentos and mushrooms on toast,” if it makes you feel more contemporary.


  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • 1 celery rib, halved
  • 1 carrot halved
  • 1 small onion, peeled and halved
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 tablespoons (½ stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ pound small fresh mushrooms, quartered
  • Salt and white pepper
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 egg yolks, lightly beaten
  • 1 4-ounce jar red pimento strips, drained and diced
  • ½ cup good-quality dry sherry (e.g., La Ina or Tío Pepe)
  • 6 puff-pastry patty shells or 6 thick slices of crustless white toast
  • 2 parsley sprigs, minced


Place chicken breasts, celery, carrot, onion, and bay leaf in a medium pot and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 10 to 12 minutes. Set chicken breasts aside to cool, discarding liquid and vegetables (or save to use as the basis for stock). When chicken is cool enough to handle, dice into ¾″ cubes.

Heat butter and oil in a large skillet and sauté mushrooms for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add chicken, mix well, and add salt and white pepper to taste. Add cream, raise heat to high, and stir well as mixture comes to a boil. Boil for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring constantly, then remove from heat. Adjust seasoning if necessary.

Stir in egg yolks, pimento strips, and sherry. Allow mixture to rest for about 5 minutes, then return to heat and reheat without bringing to a boil. Serve immediately over patty shells or toast, garnished with chopped parsley.