Monday, October 27, 2014

CHICKEN TETRAZZINI HOTDISH (Casserole to those of us outside of Minnesota!)

This is another recipe from the Hannah Swensen Mystery series by Joanne Fluke.  I find it humorous that in Minnesota (according to the book series) a casserole is called a Hotdish!  Love it!  :)  Anyway, I have had recipes for Turkey Tetrazzini in the past, but have misplaced them, so I think I may try this one.  Please note that unless I say that Yvonne made a change, all changes that say I used this or that are as they are in the book and "I" refers to the Character, Hannah.  K?

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F., rack in the middle position. 

1 and ¼ cups spaghetti (I used Ronzoni, half of a one-pound package) 
1 and ½ to 2 cups cooked chicken, cut up in cubes 
¼ cup diced, canned pimento (approximately 1 small jar —you can buy it already diced) 
¼ of a green bell pepper, diced 
1 small onion, diced 
Dash of sherry (optional) (Yvonne note:  I think I will try out some dry vermouth.  Not sure I have any sherry with me in the camper)
1 can condensed cream of mushroom soup (I used Campbell’s) 
½ cup chicken broth (I used a bouillon cube dissolved in a half-cup of hot water) 
½ teaspoon salt (I used Lawry’s garlic salt since there’s no other garlic in the recipe) 
teaspoon black pepper (freshly ground is best) 
2 to 3 cups grated cheddar cheese (or grated Italian cheeses) 
1 clove garlic finely minced (optional) 
1 small can sliced black olives, drained (optional) 
1 small can Ortega diced green chilies, drained (optional) 
“Slap Ya Mama” hot sauce (optional, for Mike) 
From Yvonne:  Ree Drumond Pioneer Woman Cooks adds 
4 slices bacon crumbled and tops hers with 
1 c Panko for some crunch.  She also uses 
8 oz cream cheese in lieu of the soup and thickens by making a roue with 
1/4 c flour in a couple of T of butter.  
I am including her recipe at the bottom of this to compare.

Hannah’s 1st Note: Florence likes things on the bland side and while this hotdish is delicious just the way she made it, I spiced it up a little for Norman by adding a clove of garlic and a small can of diced green chilies.  (from Yvonne--yeah--I'm adding the fresh garlic, leaving out the olives because Jim is not an olive eater so why bother? and using some green chilis--that does sound good!  I think we can safely leave out the Lap Ya Mama hot sauce though.  LOL) I also added a small can of sliced black olives to add interest. I served this with a bowl of freshly grated parmesan to sprinkle on top of each serving. When Mike unexpectedly joined us for dinner, I put a bottle of “Slap Ya Mama” hot sauce on the table for him. 

Break the spaghetti into pieces approximately 4 inches long . 
Cook the spaghetti in boiling, salted water, according to the package directions. (Mine cooked for 10 minutes.) 
Drain it and rinse it. 
Place the cooked spaghetti, cubed chicken, pimento, green pepper, and onion in a large bowl. 
At this point, add any optional ingredients you decided to add. 
Pour the sherry (if you decided to use it), the condensed soup, and the chicken broth over the top.
Sprinkle on the salt and the pepper and stir them in. 
Add HALF of the grated cheese, and lightly toss everything together with a fork. (I gave up on the fork and used my impeccably clean fingers instead.) (From Yvonne--have you noticed that all of her recipes use Impeccably clean hands and fingers?????  I just wash my hands normally!  Snicker!) 
Spray a 1 and ½ quart casserole dish with Pam or another nonstick cooking spray. 
Set it on a drip pan, just in case. 
Transfer the contents of your mixing bowl to the casserole dish. 
Sprinkle the remaining shredded cheese on top. 
Bake the Chicken Tetrazzini Hotdish at 350 degrees F., for 45 minutes. 

Hannah’s 2nd Note: To double this recipe , just double the ingredients and bake it in a larger casserole dish. You don’t have to double the baking time , but I’d give it an extra 20 minutes or so. When I make this for a potluck dinner, I use a disposable, half-size steam table pan. (Use 2 nested together, if the ones you buy are flimsy.) Since it spreads out in the disposable pan, I only give it an extra 15 minutes, bringing the baking time up to one hour . The reason I use a disposable pan is that I don’t have to wait around for my pan to be washed at the end of the evening. 

Yield: This hotdish serves 4 if you pair it with a nice salad and rolls or garlic bread. 

Hannah’s 3rd Note: This recipe is so easy I’m going to tell Mother to add it to her repertoire of entrees.

Fluke, Joanne (2014-01-28). Red Velvet Cupcake Murder (A Hannah Swensen Mystery) (pp. 78-81). Kensington. Kindle Edition.

Turkey Tetrazzini
Recipe courtesy of Ree Drummond

Turkey Tetrazzini
Total Time:
1 hr 5 min
30 min
35 min
Yield:8 to 12 servings
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 pound white mushrooms, quartered
1 cup dry white wine
1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more
1/2 teaspoon black pepper, plus more
1/4 cup flour
4 cups turkey or chicken broth, plus more if needed
One 8-ounce package cream cheese
3 cups leftover Thanksgiving turkey, shredded or diced
1 1/2 cups frozen green peas
1 cup grated Monterey Jack cheese
1 cup finely chopped black olives
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
4 slices bacon, fried and chopped
12 ounces thin spaghetti, broken in half and cooked
1 cup panko
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat and add the garlic.
Throw in the mushrooms, wine, salt and pepper, and cook them, stirring occasionally, until the liquid reduces by half, 3 to 4 minutes.
Sprinkle the flour all over, then stir to combine.
Pour in the broth, stir and continue to cook until the sauce is nice and thick, 3 to 4 minutes.
Add the cream cheese and stir until it mixes in. (Don't worry if it seems a little lumpy at first. That will go away!)
Add the turkey, peas, Monterey Jack, olives, Parmesan and bacon.
Stir until everything is well combined, then add salt and pepper to taste.
Add the spaghetti and stir to combine. If the mixture is too thick, splash in 1/2 cup of broth.
Pour the whole shebang into a large casserole dish and even out the surface.
Sprinkle on the panko breadcrumbs and bake it until the crumbs are golden brown and the casserole is bubbly, 20 to 25 minutes.
Serve it to hearty appetites!
Recipe courtesy Ree Drummond

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