I seldom rave about a recipe, but this is one recipe to rave about!
A “hotdish” is the colloquial term for a casserole in some parts of the Midwest. It’s ideal comfort food ~ warm and wholesome, and suited to feed a crowd.
For those of you familiar with the casseroles of years ago, the ones with an abundance of canned cream of mushroom or celery soup, this version will be a revelation. The recipe is from Martha Stewart’s Martha’s American Food cookbook, one of my favorite cookbooks, that’s filled with treasured dishes, from coast to coast.
In cooking the hotdish, first off, I browned the chicken, transferred it to a plate, then, with the drippings left in the skillet, sautéed the cremini mushrooms, with green onions (Martha used leeks) and diced celery, until golden. Finally, the sauce ingredients of flour, sherry, milk and chicken stock, were added to the mushroom mixture and simmered until thickened.
|Dark brown, full-flavored cremini mushrooms, ummm, mmm!|
But, here’s what is so special and delicious about this hotdish: the chicken pieces and mushroom sauce are layered in the baking dish, on top of overlapping triangles of dense bread, with the bread absorbing some of the delectable sauce during baking.
|Ready for the oven|
The finished dish results in succulent layers of flavor!
As I said in the beginning, this is truly a delicious hotdish, a dish to rave about!
Just imagine, if you’re lucky enough to have leftovers…
Chicken Mushroom Hotdish
2 large boneless, skinless chicken breastsCoarse salt and fresh pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
4 green onions, sliced
1 celery stalk, cut into ½” dice
10 ounces, cremini mushrooms, halved if large
3 tablespoons flour
3 tablespoons dry sherry
2¼ cups low-sodium chicken stalk
¾ cup milk
8 slices dense bread, cut into triangles*
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/3 cup finely grated Parmesan
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.Pat dry chicken with paper towels and season both sides with salt and pepper.
In a nonstick sauté pan, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat and add chicken.
Sauté until golden brown on bottom, 3-4 minutes.
Turn over chicken, reduce heat to medium, and cook 10 minutes more.
Transfer to a plate.
Heat remaining oil in pan and add onions, celery and mushrooms; cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown and tender, about 8-10 minutes.
Stir in flour and cook, stirring often, for 2 minutes.
Add sherry, stock and milk; cook, scraping up browned bits from bottom until sauce is thickened, about 5 minutes.
Season with salt and pepper.
Arrange bread on bottom of a shallow 2-quart baking dish, overlapping slices slightly.
Spoon half of the vegetables and sauce over bread.
Slice chicken crosswise, ½” thick, and arrange on bread.
Top with any accumulated juices from the chicken.
Spread remaining vegetables and sauce over chicken.
Sprinkle with Parmesan and parsley.
Bake until golden brown and bubbling, 25 to 30 minutes.
Let stand 15 minutes before serving.
*I used Pepperidge Farm original, you might want dense multigrain.
ENJOY!!! IT’S DELCIOUS!