1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons turmeric
1/2 teaspoon saffron
1 1/2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
1 teaspoon ground coriander
Optional - chili flakes/harissa
2 cinnamon sticks - approximately 2 " each
3 cups nonfat chicken stock
4 egg whites
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/3 cup finely chopped almonds
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1 - 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
canola oil mist or spray
1 package phyllo dough, thawed overnight in refrigerator
Combine spices in saucepan with stock. Bring to simmer and slowly poach chicken breasts approximately 10 minutes. Remove from heat. Cool to room temp.
Remove chicken and shred (or cut breasts in 8 pieces and pulse few times in food processor; but don't mince too finely). Place chicken in bowl; pour stock/spice mixture over; cover and refrigerate overnight preferably).
Bring to room temperature, warm slightly (if necessary to melt congealed stock) and strain off stock into 2 cup measuring cup. Should be approximately 1 1/2 cups. Remove cinnamon sticks from chicken mixture. Whisk 1/4-cup stock, with 4 egg whites and softly scramble in nonstick pan. (Reserve remaining stock for sauce.) Fold eggs into chicken mixture. This will help bind the mixture. Season to taste with salt (maybe 1/2 teaspoon; depends on stock) Stir in 1/4 cup chopped cilantro. Mixture should not be very wet. (Approximately 3 cups at this point).
Combine almonds powdered sugar and cinnamon in small bowl.
FOR INDIVIDUAL PIES: Take 3-4 sheets phyllo and quickly spray between sheets with canola oil mist (keeping remaining phyllo covered). With 4 layered oiled sheets; divide stack in quarters or sixths depending on dimension of sheets to make 4 individual pies. Using large ice cream scoop or measuring cup for uniformity, place approximately ¾ cup * chicken mixture in middle of quartered sheet; shape with hands. Sprinkle nut mixture on top and quickly bring corners over on top; flip over and place seam side down on nonstick sheet. Should be able to adjust shape if necessary to make them uniform (or sometimes I bring the four corners straight up, together and twist, like a pouch). You can refrigerate ahead at this point. It is important for chicken mixture not to be too wet or it will soak through pastry. You may quickly spray outside of pastry before baking for deeper browning. Bake at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for approximately 12 - 15 minutes or until golden. Dust with powdered sugar.
* 1/2 cup to make 6 appetizer portions or 3/4 c to make 4 entree sized portions
FOR SAUCE: Heat 1 cup of remaining stock/spice mix to boil. Thicken with approximately 1-teaspoon cornstarch. (Place cornstarch in small bowl, dissolve in 2 Tablespoons cold water and stir into boiling stock, whisking constantly. Season with salt to taste. May add 1/2-teaspoon harissa if spicier sauce is desired.
Active Time: 30 Minutes
Total Time: 55 Minutes
Yield: 4 Servings