I’ll admit it — I made up this recipe based on the chicken broccoli bake served at the University of Michigan. That was, far and away, the best food in the dorm cafeterias. To this day, I can remember how excited we used to get on chicken broccoli bake day — there was no way we were going out for pizza or burritos on those days. Of course, many years later, I discovered how incredibly unhealthy it was, filled with butter and cream. Ergo my new (somewhat) healthier recipe.
Further disclosure (and this will drive most people crazy) — when I make up recipes I don’t really have an exact science. I’m not dedicated enough to fiddle around and figure out the exact amount of what to add. In casseroles, in particular, I find that it doesn’t really matter. So then: here we go.
3 chicken breasts
1/2 white onion
1/2 packet of mushrooms
3 cloves garlic
1 bag frozen broccoli florets
1 small can cream of chicken soup
8 oz. Gruyere cheese
3 c brown rice
1.Cook the chicken however you want. I usually just boil it, but feel free to saute, grill, whatever. Since I boil, step one is putting on the water to heat up. Preheat the oven to 350.
2. Cut up the onion and mushroom, and mince the garlic. Throw them all in a big saucepan with a splash of olive oil. Sautee.
Step 3: Cut up the chicken. In a large 9 x 13 glass pan, mix the saute mixture, the cut up chicken breasts, and the broccoli.
Step 4: Chop up your gruyere cheese. If you have a grater, that’s probably even better. Most chicken broccoli bakes use a kind of cheese sauce, but I love having little bits of cheese. I cut them into about 2×1 cm squares, and mix them with the rest of the mixture.
Step 5: Add the can of soup. Stir the whole thing together so that it’s even mixed.
Step 5: Sprinkle the top with breadcrumbs. Pick your favorite kind, or add some spices. Mix it up! That’s the fun of cooking! Then put it in the oven for 45 – 60 minutes.
Step 6: While that delicious mixture is cooking, fire up your rice. I use instant brown rice, because I’m lazy, but you can do whatever you want.
Step 7: Enjoy! This is a great cold weather comfort food. Double bonus: it freezes GREAT. I like to make this on a Sunday night. It make enough for 5 meals for me, usually, so I eat one, freeze four, and I’m good to go. If you’re eating a salad or something with dinner, you could probably make 6 meals out of it. Or add rice! Your choice!