Posts Tagged ‘chicken’

Chicken Divan and Egg Noodle Bake

Monday, August 10th, 2009

This recipe is adapted from the Rachel Ray 365 No Repeats Cookbook that I got from mom for my birthday, and highlights one of the cool things about the cookbook. It’s organized around “Master Recipes,” followed by variations on the the theme. The master recipe in this case is a “Wild Cream of Mushroom Egg Noodle Bake, Hold the Canned Soup.” And if you’ve read the blog, pretty much ever, you know that we don’t do mushrooms around here.

Still, I liked the idea of ditching the canned soup and making my own. Even though, a can cream of mushroom soup is the foundation of every casserole, I’m not that big of a fan. It’s gray, and loaded with sodium and just kind of blah. Of course, cream of mushroom casserole doesn’t have much without the mushrooms, so I skipped the “master recipe” and went straight to one of the variations, a Chicken Divan casserole.

Didn’t miss the mushrooms at all, by the way.

IMG_2217

Chicken Divan & Egg Noodle Bake

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 4 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 1 cup chicken stock or broth
  • 1 cup whole milk or cream
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pound broccoli florets
  • 1 shallot, thinly sliced
  • 1 pound chicken tenders, diced
  • 4 slices bread, cubed
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup dry white wine
  • 1 pound egg noodles
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 3/4 pound Emmentaler cheese, shredded

1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil for the egg noodles.

2. To make the mushroom sauce: Heat a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the olive oil and butter. When the butter is melted, sprinkle in the flour, and cook 1 minute, to cook out the raw taste. Whisk in the chicken stock, bring it all to a bubble, then stir in the milk. Reduce the heat to low and simmer. Season the sauce to taste with salt, pepper, and freshly grated nutmeg.

3. To make the casserole, heat a nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Add two tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and the shallots. Cook for one minute, then add the chicken tender pieces and continue cooking until lightly browned and cooked through, about 6-7 minutes. Add the wine and deglaze the pan. Reduce the heat to medium low, and let the liquid cook off.

4. Meanwhile, preheat the broiler to high. While the chicken cooks, cook the egg noodles in the boiling water, until al dente. Drain the noodles and return them to the hot pot. Add the cream sauce to the pot and toss the noodles to coat in the sauce.

5. Cook the broccoli in salted boiling water for 5 minutes. Drain and reserve.

6. To make the croutons, melt 2 tablespoons of butter in nonstick skillet. Toss with the bread cubes and continue cooking, stirring frequently, until toasted all around.

7. Lightly coat a casserole dish with softened butter, then transfer the noodles & sauce to the dish and top with the chicken, broccoli, and croutons. Sprinkle with the shredded cheese, and place under the broiler until the cheese melts and is brown at the edges.

Note: This was pretty tasty. I’d probably try it again. I thought that the sauce was a touch on the thin side, and so I baked the casserole, instead of just melting the cheese under the broiler like the recipe suggested. I think the broiler would’ve been the right move, though. It got a little too dried out after baking.

Pretzel Crusted Chicken with Cheddar Cheese Sauce

Tuesday, July 21st, 2009

Pretzels and cheese…kind of a no-brainer, that one. This dish takes the salty crunch of pretzels as a breading for juicy chicken breast cutlets. The chicken’s finished with a creamy sharp cheddar cheese sauce, with a spicy note of mustard.

This was one of the first dishes to catch my eye flipping through my new Rachael Ray cookbook, 365: No Repeats.

I enjoyed cooking from this book. The recipe was easy to follow, and while I’ve heard that people take issue sometimes with the promise of a 30 minute meal, I think this chicken dish came together in about that time.

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Pretzel-Crusted Chicken Cutlets with Cheddar Cheese Sauce
Adapted from Rachael Ray’s 365: No Repeats.

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded to about 1/2 inch thin
  • 5 ounce bag of salted pretzels, any shape
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, chopped
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 eggs
  • oil for frying
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 cups grated extra-sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 2 heaping tablespoons spicy mustard
  • kosher salt

1. In the bowl of your food processor (or if you don’t have a food processor, this can be done by hand in a ziploc bag), grind the pretzels into fine crumbs. Transfer the pretzels to a shallow dish or pie plate and add the thyme and cracked black pepper.

2. In a second shallow dish or pie plate, lightly beat the two eggs with a little bit of water. Working one at a time, coat the chicken breasts in the pretzel crumbs, then in the eggs, and then in the pretzels again.

3. Preheat a large skillet with 1/4 inch of vegetable oil. Add the breaded chicken breast cutlets to the hot oil and cook in a single layer about 3 or 4 minutes per side. You may need to fry the chicken in two batches to get it all to fit. When the chicken is cooked through, the juices will run clear and the breading will be evenly browned.

4. While the chicken is cooking, make the cheese sauce. In a medium sauce pan over medium heat, melt the butter and add the flour. Cook for one minute, to remove the raw taste of the flour, then whisk in the milk. Let it come to a bubble, then stir in the shredded cheese and mustard. Add salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat.

5. Serve the fried chicken cutlets with a drizzle of cheese sauce.

Note: I liked this dish, but I screwed up and accidentally bought unsalted pretzels, which left the whole thing lacking in salt (duh!). Still, it was pretty good without the salt, and would’ve definitely been a keeper if it had been properly seasoned. Oops! I steamed some broccoli to go with the cheese sauce for David, and I suppose if you like broccoli, that was a real success. We had plenty of cheese sauce for the chicken, the broccoli, and even to dip some chips in later that weekend. ūüôā

Chicken Kiev

Saturday, June 27th, 2009

I have liked Chicken Kiev ever since I was a little kid. We used to get these frozen Chicken Kiev pieces from Market Day or Sam’s Club, and I was always excited to have them for dinner. There were other versions of the same product stuffed with cheesy broccoli or ham and swiss cheese, but for me, Chicken Kiev, with its crunchy outside and tender, buttery inside, was the best out of all of them.

It’s kind of surprising that I haven’t tried to make it more often. I came across this recipe through Photograzing, and decided to try it. Other recipes I’ve seen have used boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded them thin, and then wrapped them around pieces of herb butter. The problem with that approach is that not only is it a little on the messy side, but it’s very hard to make sure that the chicken is sealed up properly–and if it’s not, you just get chicken baked in a pan of butter, which is not the same at all real Chicken Kiev, which bursts with a warm herb-butter sauce as soon as you cut into it.

The other problem with those recipes is that they require a long stay in your fridge–most want you to chill the stuffed chicken breasts overnight before cooking, to help that butter stay inside the chicken where it belongs. This recipe, however, used ground chicken formed around cold pieces of butter. It worked perfectly, and was both easier to work with and much more fool-proof. Every one of my Chicken Kievs came out perfectly.

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Chicken Kiev
Adapted from The Five Star Foodie, via Photograzing.

  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast
  • 1/2 medium onion
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 to 1 cup seasoned bread crumbs
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon herbs de provence, plus 1 teaspoon
  • 1 stick chilled butter
  • ¬ľ cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¬ľ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Extra virgin olive oil

1. Put chicken and onion through a meat grinder, according to manufacturer’s directions, and place and in a large bowl. Add egg, salt, pepper, breadcrumbs, and 1 tablespoon of herbs to the bowl. Mix well by hand until the mixture is smooth. This part feels a lot like making a meatloaf, and really–that’s the texture you’re looking for. Form four equal-sized patties, place on plate or cutting board and flatten them.

2. Cut the stick of butter in half and roll each half into a thin log. Work with the butter quickly, so that it stays as cold as possible. Sprinkle a small plate with remaining teaspoon of herbs de provence and roll the piece of butter so that it is coated on all sides. Place one butter log in the middle of each patty, and shape the chicken into a small loaf around the butter so that the chicken mixture covers the butter completely.

3. In a shallow dish, mix panko breadcrumbs, garlic, and Parmesan. Coat the chicken patties with breadcrumbs. I thought I might need to batter the chicken pieces with egg before dipping in the breadcrumbs to get the mixture to stick, but the chicken loaves were plenty moist enough. Refrigerate for at least 10 minutes, while you preheat your oven to 375 degrees.

4. In a large skillet over medium high heat, add one to two tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. You need enough to coat the bottom of the pan. When the oil is hot (the surface will start to shimmer), brown the chicken loaves quickly. It doesn’t take long–maybe one or two minutes per side. Turn carefully with tongs (you don’t want to puncture the chicken as you turn it!).

5. Bake in a 375 degree oven, in an oven-safe dish lined with parchment paper, for 10-15 minutes or until golden brown. I used a 9 x 13 pyrex dish.

Note: I’ve always liked to have Chicken Kiev with rice, noodles, or mashed potatoes, since each of those options gives you something to soak up the delicious herb-butter sauce from the chicken.

I had to make several changes to this recipe, because the ground chicken that I had was super-moist–much too wet to stick together–so I added the breadcrumbs and a little more egg to that mixture.

I was perfectly content to grind my own chicken, since I have a meat grinder attachment for my kitchen-aid mixer that doesn’t see as much use as it should. I also always have boneless, skinless chicken breasts on hand. That being said, I think you could probably use a store-bought package of ground chicken without too much difference. You might not need as much of the breadcrumbs in that case, because I don’t think the mixture would have anywhere near as much moisture.

If you know anyone that received a food grinder attachment (for Father’s Day, perhaps?) recently, this would be a good recipe for them to start with.

Bruschetta Grilled Chicken

Tuesday, June 23rd, 2009

This simple recipe was the perfect weeknight meal: very quick, easy cleanup, and delicious. I love the tomato/basil/mozzarella flavor combination just about any time I come across it, so this was sort of a no-brainer to throw together. Marinated chicken is flavorful and juicy when grilled (or cooked in a grill pan, for us apartment-dwellers!), then topped with fresh tomato salsa-style sauce and a bit of mozzarella. The result was kind of like a Chicken Parmesan, but much lighter (both in a caloric sense, and in the sense that it’s June, and it’s hot outside, and Chicken Parmesan sure feels like a winter dish). For a quick and easy side, I tossed warm penne pasta with olive oil, garlic, a bit of the fresh tomato “salsa” and some Parmesan cheese.

Bruschetta Grilled Chicken

  • 1/2 cup Balsamic Vinaigarette salad dressing, divided
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 medium tomato, seeded and diced
  • 1/8 cup sun-dried tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced

1. Pour 1/4 cup of dressing over chicken in a ziploc bag, refrigerate 20 minutes.

2. Grill chicken over medium heat on a grill or in a heavy-bottomed grill pan (about 6 minutes). Meanwhile, combine tomatoes, garlic, basil and remaining dressing.

3. Turn chicken over, top each piece of chicken with a spoonful of the tomato mixture. Sprinkle a bit of cheese over the top of each chicken breast. Cover, and cook an additional 7-8 minutes, or until chicken reaches an internal temperature of at least 165 degrees.

Note: I used a new Basil & Parmesan vinaigarette by Kraft to marinate the chicken, and it was very tasty, but any Italian style dressing that you like would work here. Because we don’t have a grill, or a lid for our grill pan, I stuck the chicken under the broiler for a few minutes to melt and crisp up the cheese. Totally optional.

Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole

Monday, June 22nd, 2009

Can someone please teach me how to photograph a casserole? I feel like I just can’t do them justice in pictures. If I take a picture of the casserole in the pan, aside from the lighting issues in my kitchen, all you see is some sort of cheesy/crunchy topping, and a casserole is much, much more than that. If I try to take a picture of the inside of the casserole, all you see is a bowl of…something. It’s impossible to tell what’s going on, and it certainly doesn’t seem to illustrate the deliciousness of the casserole. So going forward, I’m going to need you to accept that this dish tastes better than it looks. Casserole dishes always do, as far as I can tell.

This casserole is one of my favorite casseroles in a long time. It’s a take on Chicken Cordon Bleu, traditonally a breaded chicken breast stuffed with ham and swiss cheese. This casserole takes those familiar flavors and turns them into a cheesy, baked pasta dish. Because David’s not a huge fan of ham, I used proscuitto. This would be good with ham, but the proscuitto adds an additional saltiness that paired well with the creamy cheese sauce.

Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole
Serves 6

  • 2 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 1 pound cooked chicken breast, shredded or cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup shredded swiss cheese, divided
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1 cup half and half (I used Fat-Free half and half, and it was delicious)
  • 4 oz prosciutto, either diced or sliced into thin strips
  • 8 wedges The Laughing Cow Light Creamy Swiss Original Flavor (this is one full wheel of Laughing Cow cheese; I used light because we get these at Costco in a multipack, but you could use the full fat version if you want. There’s very little difference between the two).
  • 8 ounces (1/2 box) penne pasta (I used Barilla Plus Penne, but any small pasta should be fine: shells, rotini, elbows, etc.)

1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Spray a 2 1/2 quart casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray and set aside. Boil pasta in salted water until tender. Drain and set aside.

2. In a large saucepan over medium heat, cook the prosciutto and 1 tablespoon of butter until the prosciutto is heated through and crispy at the edges. Add the Laughing Cow cheese, 1/4 cup of the shredded Swiss cheese, half and half, garlic salt and pepper. When cheese is melted and smooth, cooked chicken and pasta and stir to combine. Transfer to prepared baking dish. Sprinkle remaining 1/4 cup of shredded swiss cheese over the casserole evenly.

3. Melt the remaining tablespoon of butter in a small bowl the microwave. Add the panko bread crumbs and stir to combine.  Sprinkle over the top of the casserole. Bake for 10-15 minutes, until the casserole is heated through, the cheese on top is melted, and the buttered bread crumbs have crisped. Serve immediately.

Note: I really enjoyed this, and I am sure we’ll be making it again. I think broccoli might be a welcome addition to the rich casserole for the next time–something to think about, anyway.

Chicken & Cashews

Wednesday, May 20th, 2009

I pulled this recipe from a recent issue of Cooking Light magazine. I don’t really have a lot to say about this one–it was good, but not great. I prefer the Cashew Chicken Stir Fry that I made before. Really, there shouldn’t have been a lot of difference, but to me, the previous version was much better. I’ll be keeping that as my standby, as far as Cashew Chicken goes.

Chicken & Cashews
Adapted from Cooking Light, May 2009

  • 3¬† tablespoons¬† low-sodium soy sauce, divided
  • 2¬† tablespoons¬† dry sherry
  • 4¬† teaspoons¬† cornstarch, divided
  • 1¬† pound¬† skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1/2¬† cup¬† fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 2¬† tablespoons¬† oyster sauce
  • 1¬† tablespoon¬† honey
  • 2¬† teaspoons¬† sesame oil, divided
  • 3/4¬† cup¬† chopped onion
  • 1/2¬† cup¬† chopped celery
  • 1/2¬† cup¬† chopped red bell pepper
  • 1¬† tablespoon¬† grated peeled fresh ginger
  • 2¬† garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2¬† cup¬† chopped green onions (about 3 green onions)
  • 1/4¬† cup¬† chopped unsalted dry-roasted cashews

1. Combine 1 tablespoon soy sauce, sherry, 2 teaspoons cornstarch, and chicken in a large bowl; toss well to coat. Combine remaining 2 tablespoons soy sauce, remaining 2 teaspoons cornstarch, broth, oyster sauce, and honey in a small bowl.

2. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken mixture to pan; sauté 3 minutes. Remove from pan. Heat remaining 1 teaspoon oil in pan. Add onion, celery, and bell pepper to pan; sauté 2 minutes. Add ginger and garlic; sauté 1 minute. Return chicken mixture to pan; sauté 1 minute. Stir in broth mixture. Bring to a boil; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Sprinkle with green onions and cashews.

Rice pilaf: Heat 1 tablespoon canola oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add 1/2 cup chopped onion and 2 teaspoons grated peeled fresh ginger to pan; sauté 2 minutes. Stir in 1 cup water, 1/2 cup long-grain rice, and 1/4 teaspoon salt; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 12 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat; stir in 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro.

Fried Chicken Breasts

Thursday, May 14th, 2009

Mmm. Fried Chicken. One of those classic, delicious, decadent treats. I can’t say we’ll be eating this every night, because who needs fried chicken every night? But I found myself facing some pretty bare cabinets last week, with boneless, skinless chicken breasts in the freezer, and needing to make something. So I decided to adapt Alton Brown’s Fried Chicken recipe to work with boneless skinless chicken breasts. And really, once you remove the skin from the chicken, is it really *so* bad?

fried-chicken

Alton Brown’s Fried Chicken

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cups low fat buttermilk
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon Hungarian (smoked) paprika
  • 1 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Flour, for dredging
  • Vegetable shortening, for frying

Directions

Place chicken pieces into a plastic container and cover with buttermilk. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.

Melt enough shortening (over low heat) to come just 1/8-inch up the side of a 12-inch cast iron skillet or heavy fry pan. Once shortening liquefies raise heat to 325 degrees F. Do not allow oil to go over 325 degrees F.

Drain chicken in a colander. Combine salt, paprika, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper. Liberally season chicken with this mixture. Dredge chicken in flour and shake off excess.

Place chicken in a single layer in the pan. The oil should come half way up the pan. Cook chicken until golden brown on each side, approximately 6 to 8 minutes per side. More importantly, the internal temperature should be right around 180 degrees. (Be careful to monitor shortening temperature every few minutes.)

Drain chicken on a rack over a sheet pan. Don’t drain by setting chicken directly on paper towels or brown paper bags. If you need to hold the chicken before serving, cover loosely with foil but avoid holding in a warm oven, especially if it’s a gas oven.

Note: The chicken was tasty, but even though I halved all of the spices from Alton’s original recipe, meant for a full chicken, it was a little too salty. I would lower the salt by another half, if not more, next time. That said, the breading was crunchy and flavorful. I’m certain that it would be amazing using a full chicken. I served this with a variation on that parmesan pepperoni pasta salad, with a side of corn.

Cooking Light’s Sweet & Sour Chicken

Sunday, April 26th, 2009

I really, really enjoyed this Sweet & Sour Chicken recipe, and so did Leah and David. The sauce made with pineapple juice was much tastier than any sweet and sour sauce I’ve had at home. The water chestnuts and bell pepper added a satisfying crunch to the mixture, but the pineapple chunks were my favorite. This was very good with canned pineapple, but I imagine fresh pineapple could take it to a whole new level. I think I’ll try that next time.

Sweet & Sour Chicken
Adapted from Cooking Light magazine

  • 1¬† tablespoon¬† olive oil
  • 1¬† tablespoon¬† bottled minced garlic
  • 1¬† teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1/4¬† teaspoon¬† crushed red pepper
  • 1 1/2¬† pounds¬† skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 3/4¬† cup¬† chopped onion
  • 1/2¬† cup¬† chopped red bell pepper
  • 1 small can sliced water chestnuts, drained
  • 1¬† (15 1/4-ounce) can pineapple chunks in juice, undrained
  • 1/3¬† cup¬† reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 2¬† tablespoons¬† rice vinegar
  • 1 1/2¬† tablespoons¬† cornstarch
  • 2¬† teaspoons¬† brown sugar
  • 1/4¬† cup¬† dry-roasted chopped cashews
  • 1 batch of prepared Baked Brown Rice, recipe follows

Directions

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic, ginger, red pepper, and chicken to pan; sauté 5 minutes or until chicken is done. Remove chicken mixture from pan; set aside.

Add onion, celery, water chestnuts, and bell pepper to pan, and sauté 4 minutes or until crisp-tender. Drain pineapple, reserving 1/2 cup juice. Add 1 cup pineapple chunks to pan; cook 30 seconds. Reserve remaining pineapple for another use. Combine the reserved 1/2 cup juice, soy sauce, vinegar, cornstarch, and sugar in a bowl, stirring with a whisk until smooth.

Return chicken mixture to pan. Stir in juice mixture; bring to boil. Cook 1 minute. Sprinkle with cashews. Serve over rice.

Note: Sweet & Sour Chicken is one of my favorite Chinese dishes to order. Normally, the take-out version is made by deep frying the chunks of chicken in a thick batter before adding them to a thick, syrupy sauce. Though this dish was a little different than that version, I didn’t miss the breading one bit. I will definitely make this one again.

Alton Brown’s Baked Brown Rice

This is by far the easiest and best brown rice recipe I’ve come across. It’s literally fool-proof, and after you taste the chewy, nutty texture, you’ll never go back to Minute Rice again.

  • 1 1/2 cups brown rice, medium or short grain
  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

Directions

  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  • Place the rice into an 8-inch square glass baking dish.
  • Bring the water, butter, and salt just to a boil in a kettle or covered saucepan. Once the water boils, pour it over the rice, stir to combine, and cover the dish tightly with heavy-duty aluminum foil. Bake on the middle rack of the oven for 1 hour.
  • After 1 hour, remove cover and fluff the rice with a fork. Serve immediately.

Cheesy Chicken & Broccoli Rice Casserole

Saturday, April 25th, 2009

This one is not for my mother. In fact, she should probably just stop reading. She doesn’t eat broccoli, and she doesn’t eat casseroles, and so she’s not going to like the rest of this post very much.

But for everyone else, this is a quick, tasty casserole. Very easy to put together, and pretty tasty. With brown rice and lower fat cheese soup, it’s also a pretty healthy alternative to the normal cheesy broccoli casserole. The layer of stuffing on top adds a nice balance of flavors, seals in the moisture, and also gets just a bit crispy.

Cheesy Chicken & Broccoli Rice Casserole

  • 2 cups instant brown rice (I used Minute Rice), prepared without butter
  • 1 can 98% Fat Free Broccoli Cheddar Soup
  • 2 cups cooked chicken chunks
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 package green giant broccoli with cheese sauce
  • 1/4 cup finely shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 box StoveTop stuffing, prepared with water only
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 2 quart casserole with non-stick cooking spray.

2. Prepare instant rice according to package directions, omitting fat. Set aside. Microwave broccoli & cheese sauce according to package directions. Set aside. Prepare package of StoveTop stuffing, with water only (omitting the fat).

3. In a medium skillet, saute onions and celery with the olive oil, until tender. Add the rice, soup, package of broccoli & cheese, and shredded cheese and stir to combine. Transfer to the prepared baking dish and bake for about 30 minutes.

4. Remove the dish from the oven and spread the StoveTop mixture across the top of the casserole. Return to the oven and bake for another 20-25 minutes, or until heated through completely. Let cool for 5-10 minutes before serving.

Note: I only used half a can of soup, but I think it would’ve been better with the whole can, so I’d recommend that. This wasn’t anyhting too special, but I’d probably make it again.

Chicken Baseballs

Wednesday, April 15th, 2009

Chicken Baseballs is a recipe that I found on the Weight Watchers message boards a while ago. It’s basically a creamy, cheesy chicken filling baked inside a flaky dough. I’ve made them a few times, and they’re very tasty. My method, it seems, is a little different than the one floating around the boards these days. I’m not sure if I changed the recipe or they did, but here’s how I make them.

Chicken Baseballs

  • 1 package (tube)¬† reduced fat crescent roll dough
  • 1 pound (about 2 cups) cooked boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2 inch chunks
  • 8 ounce block “1/3 less fat than cream cheese” (neufchatel cheese), softened
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup low fat sour cream
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Prepare a baking sheet by spraying with non-stick spray or lining with parchment paper.

2. In a large mixing bowl, combine cream cheese, sour cream, salt, pepper, garlic, onion powder, and cumin.  Beat with a hand mixer until smooth. Stir in shredded cheese and chopped chicken until combined.

3. Unroll crescent roll dough on prepared baking sheet. Break the roll into four rectangles. Each rectangle will be made up of two intact triangles. Pinch together the seams on each pair. Scoop one quarter of the chicken and cheese mixture onto each rectangle and carefully shape the dough around the filling by pulling each corner to the top. When the filling is completely enclosed, place on the baking sheet seam side down. Repeat with remaining filling and rectangles of dough.

4. Sprinkle each roll with sesame seeds and bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes, or until crescent dough is golden brown.

Note: In case you were wondering, they’re called chicken baseballs because the seam in the crescent roll dough kind of resembles the seams on a baseball. Or so I’m told.