Growing up in Panama one of my favorite snack foods was spicy chicken puff pastries (pastelitos de pollo). The soft flaky pastry filled with bits of savory chicken pieces was such a treat, every time. Pastelitos de pollo are definitely street food, as well as very delicious.
Driving out to the countryside with my family, there were road stands along the way that sold chicken puff pastries. If I would have had it my way, I would have stopped at every single one. Now, as an adult, every time I make spicy chicken puff pastries the process takes me right back to my childhood.
For starters, I want to admit that I have NEVER made my own puff pastry. It’s just one of those things, you know. I have watched it on YouTube, as well as on cooking shows, but I still buy it at the store. To properly cut the puff pastry I use a biscuit cutter, and for added detail I use a fork to seal the edges. I need to tell you that I have this really cute set of biscuit cutters, (affiliate link) crimped edges and everything. I use the 3″ cutter to make these.
Spicy chicken puff pastries are similar to the Turkish meat pastries I made last summer. I think I have mentioned before that just about every country in the world has their own version of a meat or a vegetable wrapped in a pastry. It’s convenient, delicious, and portable!
Finally, spicy chicken puff pastries are a favorite in my family. I prefer chicken, while my husband and son prefer the meat version.
Spicy chicken puff pastries is a fun recipe to make with the kids because it’s an assembly line process. Just make sure you rotate the tasks; I speak from personal experience.
- 1 package of puff pastry
- 6 oz. boneless chicken breast
- 2 tsp. olive oil
- ¼ cup chopped onion
- 1 garlic clove minced
- ½ tsp. salt
- ½ tsp. cumin
- ¼ tsp. paprika
- ¼ tsp. chili powder
- ⅓ cup water
- 1 Tbsp. tomato paste
- 2 Tbsp. chopped cilantro
- 1 egg + 1 Tbsp. water for brushing
- Preheat oven to 375'F
- In a skillet, on medium heat, saute onion and garlic in olive oil until translucent. Add chicken, and sprinkle with salt, cumin, paprika, and chili powder. Turn heat to low, add water, tomato paste, and cilantro. Cover and cook for about 20 minutes.
- Remove from heat and transfer to a cutting board. Allow the chicken to cool, then cut into small pieces.
- Cut circles into the puff pastry using the 3" biscuit cutter.
- Brush the bottom circle with egg wash, then place a small amount of the filling in the center of the circle, and cover with another circle. Crimp edges using the tines of a fork.
- Brush with egg wash.
- Bake for about 20 minutes or until golden brown.