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Chicken & Green Bean Casserole



I really need to learn to label things better before I put them into the freezer.  I package them really well, so that they are protected from freezer burn, but most of the time (with a few exceptions) I don't bother to label them, thinking that I will remember what the package contains.



As much as I think I will  . . .  I invariably never do!  What's up with that! The worst is leftovers. I really should label them. You cannot imagine the number of times we end up with a complete mystery meal for supper because I couldn't tell what was in the container I am thawing out!


Oh well, who doesn't enjoy a nice surprise every now and then!  Yesterday I thought I was thawing out chicken thighs, but it ended up that I was thawing out chicken breasts. Not a problem really, they were both chicken, but I had to completely change my meal plan out because thighs and breasts do require a somewhat different approach to cooking!


Breasts can tend to dry out whereas thighs stay moist and succulent.  They are actually my favourite cut of thicken, the thighs . . . but I like breasts too.


This is a chicken variant on our favourite green bean casserole. It uses no cream soup, just a lush homemade cream sauce, flavoured with chicken stock, milk, thyme and onion.


You could of course use a can of soup if you wanted to, but I find it is just as easy to make my own sauce.


There is no need to cook the chicken first.  Simply slice it into strips and lay it into the bottom of a casserole dish.


On top of the chicken you layer on thawed  cut frozen green beans. You could of course use a tin of cut green beans, drained, but I like the frozen ones. They taste fresher.


The sauce gets poured over the whole thing then  . . .  I spread it out to cover with the back of a spoon.


Finally you sprinkle on top a layer of either buttered herb stuffing crumb or buttered crushed croutons.


Herb stuffing crumbs are a bit hard to come by over here.  I like these.  They are rather expensive, but they last a long time, especially if you keep them in the freezer.


Alternately you can use crushed croutons, or you can make your own herb stuffing crumbs and keep them in the freezer ready to use for recipes such as this. Its really not that hard and its a lot cheaper than any other alternative.


Once all of your ingredients are layered in the dish, simply cover it tightly with foil and then bake for half an hour, uncover and bake for a further 15 minutes at which time it should be bubbling, the chicken will be cooked through and the crumb topping will be nicely golden brown.


Chicken & Green Bean Casserole

Yield: 2 - 3
Author:
Rich and delicious, this simple casserole makes a great mid-week supper dish.

ingredients:

For the sauce:
  • 2 TBS butter
  • 2 TBS flour
  • 2 TBS minced fresh onion
  • 240ml chicken stock (1 cup)
  • 240ml milk (1 cup)
  • 1/4 tsp dried thyme
  • salt and black pepper to taste
You will also need:
  • 2 large chicken breast fillets.
  • 3 TBS butter, melted
  • 45g herb stuffing crumbs or crushed garlic croutons (1/2 cup)
  • 150g frozen cut green beans, thawed (1 cup)

instructions:

How to cook Chicken & Green Bean Casserole

  1. First make the sauce. Melt the butter in a saucepan. Add the onion and cook over low heat until softened, without colouring. Add the flour and cook, stirring for one minute. Slowly whisk in the stock and then the milk. Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture comes to a boil, bubbles and thickens. Cook for one minute further and then remove from the heat. Stir in thyme and season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180*C/350*F/ gas mark 4. Butter an 8 inch square baking dish.
  3. Slice the chicken fillets crosswise into 1 inch strips. Place them in the bottom of the baking dish. Top with the thawed beans. Pour the sauce to cover all. Mix the melted butter and stuffing crumbs. Sprinkle this evenly over top. Cover tightly with foil.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake for 15 minutes longer, until the chicken is cooked through, the casserole is bubbling and the top is golden brown. Serve hot.
Created using The Recipes Generator



This is really and truly delicious.  I love simple casseroles such as this.  For Todd I simply add some mashed potatoes (I keep a bag of frozen ones in the freezer just for this purpose) and I will cook an additional vegetable for both of us to enjoy.  It makes a lovely mid week supper. If you are wanting to feed more people simply double the recipe ingredients! 

Up tomorrow:  Maple Buttered Squash 

 

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Marie Rayner
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1 comment:

  1. I love cooking with chicken thighs. You're right -- they stay more moist. This looks good. Love green bean casserole; the chicken turns it into a main dish.

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