Cheesy Chicken Broccoli Casserole / Comfort Food

cheesy-chicken-broccoli-casserole-comfort-foodCheesy Chicken Broccoli Casserole features broccoli, chopped cooked chicken and brown rice sauced with a mixture of cream of chicken soup with plain yogurt, flavored with lemon juice, cooking sherry and curry powder and topped with buttered panko bread crumbs. The original recipe for Cheesy Chicken Broccoli Casserole is a retro recipe that I’ve updated and changed to make it a somewhat healthier version of the original recipe.

Comfort Food

Ah! Comfort food! We all have certain foods, often memories from our childhoods, that give us great comfort. Food that provides a nostalgic or sentimental value specific to an individual or specific culture is considered comfort food.

Comfort food may be associated with the security of childhood but I don’t believe you have to be “stressed out” to desire comfort food. Soothing negative feelings may be one aspect of comfort foods but relishing comfort food could just be a desire for simpler, less sophisticated but tasty fare!


My idea of comfort food includes Macaroni and Cheese as well as Tuna Noodle Casserole. But the recipe I wish to share with you today also feels like comfort food to me, even though my mother never made this dish for us. I found the original recipe for Cheesy Chicken Broccoli Casserole in my favorite cookbook from Viewmont Baptist Church in my hometown of Hickory, North Carolina.

Recipe for Cheesy Chicken Broccoli Casserole

Cheesy Chicken Broccoli Casserole
Serves 6
A chicken casserole with brown rice and broccoli, flavored with sherry, lemon juice and curry powder.
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Cook Time
35 min
Cook Time
35 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 (10-oz.) pkgs. frozen broccoli (or 1 head fresh)
  2. 2 cups cooked chicken, chopped
  3. 1 1/2 cups brown rice, cooked
  4. 1 (10 3/4 oz.) can cream of chicken soup
  5. 1 cup plain yogurt (Greek is good)
  6. 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  7. 1 teaspoon sherry
  8. 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
  9. 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
  10. 1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs
  11. 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  12. 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
Instructions
  1. Steam broccoli until tender. Place broccoli, chicken and brown rice in 9" x 11" casserole dish. Combine soup, yogurt, lemon juice, sherry and curry powder and mix well.
  2. Pour over casserole ingredients.
  3. Sprinkle Cheddar cheese over top of casserole.
  4. Mix Panko bread crumbs with melted butter and sprinkle crumbs over top of casserole.
  5. Bake at 375 degrees F. for 25-35 minutes, until cheese is lightly browned.
Adapted from Viewmont Baptist Church Cookbook
Adapted from Viewmont Baptist Church Cookbook
SILVER FOODIE http://www.silverfoodie.com/

Recipe Changes

The original recipe specified two cans of cream of chicken soup which I reduced to one can. In place of the mayonnaise in the original recipe I used non-fat plain Greek yogurt, which gave the finished dish a nice tanginess. I added sherry to the mixture and used Panko bread crumbs instead of regular bread crumbs. There was no rice in the original recipe but I wanted to add brown rice to it and it was a great addition!

Conclusion

Cheesy Chicken Broccoli Casserole is a complete meal in itself – chicken, brown rice and broccoli – but a serving suggestion is to include a salad or perhaps another vegetable for a complete meal. If you don’t care for brown rice, use white rice or no rice at all! Individualize the recipe to fit your particular preferences! The next time I make this recipe I may add some almonds or water chestnuts for more crunch.

Another comfort food casserole I would recommend to you is Unforgettable Chicken Casserole – A Crunchy Delight.

If you want a hearty meal with a little taste of home, try Cheesy Chicken Broccoli Casserole today! Ah, comfort food!

Remember to Savor the Flavor!

Janet

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Tangy Cranberry Turkey Quesadillas

 

cranberry-turkey-quesadillas

Cranberry Turkey Quesadillas include chopped turkey combined with a mixture of cream cheese, chopped cranberries, chopped green chilies (mild unless you want more heat!), honey and a dash of hot sauce  sandwiched between two whole wheat tortillas and grilled until crisp. Of course, ham or chicken could be substituted for turkey in this recipe which could be served as appetizers or a light lunch. I could definitely envision this as lunch the day after Thanksgiving when  great turkey leftovers abound!

The Recipe for Cranberry Turkey Quesadillas


Cranberry Turkey Quesadillas
Serves 2
Diced turkey, cranberries, cream cheese, green chilies, honey and a touch of hot sauce sandwiched between two whole wheat tortillas and grilled.
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Ingredients
  1. 3 ounces of cream cheese, softened
  2. 1/4 cup chopped fresh or frozen cranberries, thawed
  3. 1 tablespoon chopped green chilies
  4. 1 1/2 teaspoons honey
  5. 1 teaspoon (or less) of hot sauce (like Texas Pete)
  6. 4 whole wheat tortillas (6-inch)
  7. 1 cup diced cooked turkey breast
Instructions
  1. In a small bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth.
  2. Stir in the cranberries, chilies, honey and hot sauce until blended.
  3. Spread cream cheese mixture over tortilla; top with turkey.
  4. Add second tortilla on top. Repeat.
  5. Grill for 2-3 minutes on each side or until lightly browned and crisp.
  6. Cut into wedges to serve.
Notes
  1. Ham or chicken may be substituted for turkey in this recipe.
SILVER FOODIE http://www.silverfoodie.com/
 Cranberries just liven up any dish with their unique tart flavor and their beautiful jewel-red color! This recipe for Cranberry Turkey Quesadillas yields 2 servings; if more is needed just do the math!

Did You Know?

  • Firmness is the primary indicator of quality in choosing cranberries? Choose fresh, plump cranberries, deep red in color and quite firm to the touch.
  • Cranberries are not grown in water, they are grown in bogs. They are floated in water to allow for easier harvesting.
  • American Indians enjoyed cranberries cooked and sweetened with honey or maple syrup – a cranberry sauce recipe that was likely a treat at early New England Thanksgiving feasts. The Indians also used cranberries as the source for red dye.
  • Cranberries are grown in the northern United States and southern Canada. They are harvested between Labor Day and Halloween, then appear in grocery stores between October and December, just in time to add their festive hue, tart tangy flavor and numerous health benefits to our holiday meals.
  • Cranberries possess some anti-cancer properties, anti-oxidant properties and anti-inflammatory properties. Cranberries are useful in the prevention and treatment of urinary tract infections.
  • Cranberries may be stored under refrigeration for up to 20 days. In the frozen state, cranberries may be kept for several years.
  • 95% of all cranberries are processed into juice.
  • Cranberry sauce was the first commercially processed food product.

 

More Recipes Featuring Cranberries

I would encourage you to buy extra cranberries this year to store in the freezer to use in some of the following recipes. Cranberries are available for such a short period of time! These recipes containing cranberries have appeared in earlier Silver Foodie posts.

how-to-make-homemade-cranberry-sauce

How To Make Homemade Cranberry Sauce

cranberry-almond-muffinCranberry Almond Muffins

cranberry-coffeecakeCranberry Coffee Cake

cranberry-meatballsCranberry Meatballs

cranberry-pork-roast-on-platterCranberry Pork Roast

I hope you will let cranberries captivate you this year! What’s your favorite cranberry recipe?

Remember to Savor the Flavor!

Janet

*If you’d like to receive new Silver Foodie posts automatically, please enter your e-mail address in the space under “Silver Foodie Updates” on the right sidebar. Then click “Sign up.” Thank you!

For a list of Link Parties in which I participate weekly, just click on “Link Parties” on the header menu bar or scroll down the right sidebar.

 

 

 

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