Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Chicken Artichoke Casserole

This is one of those dishes that tastes so much better than it looks. I took multiple pictures of this dish - in the casserole dish and on the plate- but none of the pictures looked very appealing or did it justice.

What is appealing about this dish is first: the smell. I love the smell of food baking. This recipe is no exception. I also added baked asparagus as a side dish and the smell of both cooking today was yummy.

The second appealing thing is the taste. It is yummy, but what I like about it is that is different - not your typical chicken casserole taste. The artichokes and the bread crumbs give it an unique flavor.

This dinner also reheats well, which I like. It is good to find recipes that also make good leftovers to eat another day.

Well enough said. Here is the recipe. It is from Betty Crocker.

Ingredients for Chicken Artichoke Casserole:
1 tablespoon olive oil

1 cup of chopped red bell pepper
1/4 cup of sliced green onions

3 cups of cooked chicken

1 can of cooked (14oz) artichoke hearts in water, drained and chopped
1 container (10 oz) refrigerated reduced fat Alfredo pasta sauce

1 cup shredded Asiago cheese (4oz)

1/2 cup of reduced fat mayonnaise
1 &1/2 cup of Romano cheese croutonos (from 5 oz bag) coarsely chopped

Directions: 1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 11 x 7 inch (2 quart) baking dish with cooking spray. In six inch skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add bell pepper and green onions; cook 2 to 3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until bell peppers and onions start to soften. In large bowl, mix bell pepper mixture and all remaining ingredients except croutons. Spoon into baking dish. Top with croutons.

2. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until hot and bubbly. If desired sprinkle with additional green onions. (I also add some shredded Parmesan cheese on top as well. I love Parmesan cheese!)

Oh, and if you like the baked asparagus idea as a side dish, it is pretty simple to make:

1. Cut of the tough ends of the asparagus. (They wont bake well and will taste yucky.)

2. Use cooking spray so they wont stick to pan
3. Cut up 1 tablespoon of butter and place strategically across asparagus so it will melt evenly.
4. Sprinkle with shredded Parmesan cheese and soft white or wheat bread crumbs.
5. Bake about 15 minutes at 400 degrees. (I use my toaster oven as the cooking temperatures are different for the chicken artichoke casserole and the baked asparagus.)

Enjoy the yummy smell and taste!

FYI: I don't usually crush the croutons too much just chopped them a little. Also I have used all different flavored croutons and they taste yummy.