Sunday, December 09, 2012

Chicken, broccoli and rice casserole

A recipe from the Sherlock Family cookbook has been kicked up a notch by adding some chicken to it. A package of Perdue "Short Cuts" works well for this. You could also prepare your own pieces with some grilled or broiled chicken breast.

1 cup raw rice
1 bunch fresh broccoli or 2 x 10 oz packages of frozen broccoli crowns
1 stick of margarine
2 stalks of celery, chopped
1 can cream of chicken soup
3/4 can (use soup can) of milk
5 slices of American cheese
Ritz cracker crumbs
1 medium onion, chopped

Boil rice and broccoli. Saute onion and celery in margarine. Mix with cooked rice and broccoli.
Place in buttered casserole. Add soup and milk. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Top with cheese and cracker crumbs. Bake for 1 hour at 350 degrees F.

The before baking photo

Chicken, broccoli and rice casserole before baking

Steve's modifications

I used 2-3 tablespoons of margarine and then added some olive oil to saute the onions and celery. I made sure the celery started to get soft and didn't let the onions caramelize.

The frozen broccoli was allowed to thaw but was added without being cooked first. Baking in the oven for the hour is enough to cook the broccoli and still leave it firm If it is pre-cooked, the broccoli comes out as mush. For those who like it that way, go ahead. For those who like their broccoli a little firm, try it this way.

Adding the chicken which is already cooked doesn't change the cooking time.

The seasonings can be adjusted also. If your tastes allow for more than salt and pepper, go for it. Mrs Dash has some nice combinations that when used sparingly add a nice taste to the casserole.

The after baking photo

Chicken, broccoli and rice casserole after baking