Day 289: Classy Chicken

Classy+Chicken+2 Day 289: Classy Chicken

OK, it was turkey again. But I have to call it Classy Chicken because that’s what it was – an old recipe from The Best of Bridge - a tin-of-soup-and-mayo casserole that remains my Dad’s favourite dinner and when I was a kid, taught me what opaque meant. (As in, saute the peppered chicken until it turns opaque.) Classy chicken (or turkey, as the case may be) can be served with rice, but around here it must be served with mashed potatoes, which I also happen to have extra of. The very best part is the crispy golden ring around the edges it produces in the oven.

This, to me, is the quintessential after-school-special dinner that still makes me feel like I have homework to do. After eating it, I actually had the urge to go up to my room and call my friends without my sisters listening in on the other line.

I’m going to post the original B of B recipe – it has not been referred to for years, as my entire family knows this by heart. Looking it up now I didn’t even realize asparagus was an option – it’s just so much a chicken and broccoli bake. I use a bunch of broccoli, (usually) leftover roast chicken or turkey, low fat cream of mushroom soup and a big spoonful of low fat mayo – likely closer to 1/4 cup than to 1/2. And a little more curry powder, if my Mom isn’t eating it. Tonight I used up the last of a bag of pre-grated white cheeses leftover from foodstyling last week.

Classy Chicken

(from Winners -page 85 – and The Best of the Best)

3 chicken breasts, skinned & boned
1/4 tsp. pepper
3 Tbsp. oil
1 – 10 oz. (280 g) pkg. frozen asparagus or broccoli (fresh is even better)
1 – 10 oz. (284 ml) can cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup light mayonnaise
1 tsp. curry powder
1 tsp. lemon juice
1/2 – 1 cup grated cheddar cheese

Cut chicken into bite-sized pieces and sprinkle with pepper. Saute quickly in oil over medium heat just until opaque (don’t overcook – the chicken will get tough!) Drain. Cook asparagus or broccoli until crunchy. Drain and arrange in bottom of buttered casserole. Place chicken on top. Mix together soup, mayonnaise, curry and lemon juice and pour over chicken. Sprinkle with cheddar cheese and bake, uncovered, at 350F for 30-35 minutes. Serves 6.

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October 15 2008 06:26 pm | chicken & turkey and leftovers

11 Responses to “Day 289: Classy Chicken”

  1. Dana McCauley on 15 Oct 2008 at 6:53 pm #

    I think my family’s “Classy Chicken” meal was Swiss steak served with mashed potatoes. I hardly ever make these days it but when i was writing Dana’s Top Ten Table, I recreated my memorized recipe on paper and when I was testing the recipe, I too, was transported back to the days of homework and asking if I could have permission to use the phone.

  2. robyn on 15 Oct 2008 at 8:31 pm #

    I can’t believe this is the first time this year that you’ve posted this!! I had it at your house once and it was delicious….

    Funny, you’ve rarely repeated a meal all year. Very few!

  3. Theresa on 15 Oct 2008 at 10:24 pm #

    homework was always accompanied by triscuits and “cheese ends”. My Grandparents lived in Armstrong (cheese plant). Mom used to buy the cheese ends in 4 kg bags. ($5-6.00) Are you drooling Julie? :)

    This recipe is my MIL’s favorite. I’ve enjoyed it many times at their place!

  4. pauline on 16 Oct 2008 at 5:59 am #

    My kids favourite too. Never thought I could use leftover chicken or turkey though. Thanks Julie thats dinner tonight and hopefully the last of the turkey.

  5. Bonnie on 16 Oct 2008 at 7:02 am #

    Dinner tonight for us too. I’ve been meaning to try this recipe and now I have the perfect solution for the last of the leftover turkey. Thanks Julie.

  6. JulieVR on 16 Oct 2008 at 7:34 am #

    Theresa – v. cool, living in Armstrong by the cheese plant! I have to point out though (I’m sure you know this, but to others who might assume you mean Armstrong cheese) – the cheese plant you’re referring to is the Village Cheese Company, correct? Armstrong Cheese is actually owned by Saputo and based in Ontario.

  7. Lana on 16 Oct 2008 at 9:06 am #

    I didn’t know this was a recipe from B of B! It is in my cookbook of collected scraps of paper in the name of “Phyllis’ Chicken Casserole”. My Mom called it that after her friend (Phyllis!) made it and shared it with her, years ago. A memory of dinner at my parents’ kitchen table, too.

    My fav after-school/pre-homework meal was always the rice, topped with chicken or pork chops, covered in mushroom soup and onion soup mix and water, baked all together to make this creamy, crispy on the edges of the pan, kind of dinner. YUM!
    Luckily, my kids love it too and it works really well in the crockpot.

    Mmmmmmm.

  8. robyn on 16 Oct 2008 at 9:33 am #

    As far as I know, there is an Armstrong Cheddar factory still in Armstrong…..but I do believe Saputo owns it.

  9. Theresa on 16 Oct 2008 at 10:07 am #

    Here’s the little embarrassed face!! :o)
    I’m SO OLD…………. that it WAS Armstrong Cheese!!! My mom bought the ends and the ‘squeaky cheese’ (curds) and it was the original Armstrong plant. Saputo came in and bought it, tried to make it more efficient and ended up shutting it down in about 1999. The new company that formed used the highly skilled craftsmen from the Armstrong plant and the Village Cheese Company was born. They are the original cheesemakers. They STILL make the BEST BEST BEST cheddar ends, squeaky cheese etc. You can go on a tour there. You can even call ahead and if they are making cheese you can make it with them! They are more than proud of the quality of their cheese and love to show it off, feed you and help you realize how you can no longer live without it. Oh, the heavenly memories…. I had the **most** friends when we had cheese ends and triscuits……..

    :)

  10. Rebecca on 18 Oct 2008 at 7:46 pm #

    A friend just introduced me to this recipe. I don’t actually like it with the asparagus as much as I like it with broccoli, spinach, and/or cauliflower. If I was using asparagus, I don’t think that it’s worth it to cook it ahead of time – it gets way too soggy. Two other changes that I’ve made – I use cheddar soup or light broccoli soup for a different flavour and I saute my chicken in the curry (plus I add WAY more curry than they call for!). Such a yummy winter casserole :)

  11. Patricia on 12 Aug 2010 at 12:27 am #

    Theresa: My grandparents lived in Armstrong as well, and my father worked at the original Armstrong Cheese factory. My dad has since passed away and now I am on a quest to find the original building…do you know where it is? It is not the same building that Village Cheese is in…I do know that. Thanks!

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