It had to happen. You probably knew it was going to. Yep, I have downsized one of my favorite casseroles, Amish Chicken & Stuffing Casserole.
The original recipe served 6 to 8 people. This version serves only two. You can find that original recipe here. I appreciate that some of you are larger families and will want the full deal.
As I said, this is one of my absolute favourite chicken casserole recipes! That is for a number of reasons. One, I love chicken, and I totally adore chicken and stuffing together.
Two, I love anything Amish and anything to do with the Amish. I love their culture and way of life and I totally love their food. Simple ingredients done really well.
And finally because this is a simple and easy recipe, that is a great way to use up stale bread or rolls. You can also use leftover cooked chicken in it, but generally I will poach chicken specifically to use in this.
Poaching your own chicken is not that hard to do. Just pop it into a saucepan and cover it with some chicken or vegetable stock, a few peppercorns and a bay leaf. Bring to the boil. Allow it to simmer for about 10 minutes and then set it aside to cool in the broth until you can easily handle it with your hands.
It ends up moist and tender every time. Ready to shred and use in whatever way you want. You can use it to make casseroles such as this one, or you can cube it and make chicken salad with it. Whatever you like.
And you can poach as many chicken breasts as you can conceivably use. I often buy full packs of chicken breasts, poach them and then freeze them in individual containers, each one holding about a cup of cooked chicken.
Ready to take out and use as and when I need cooked chicken!
For me when I am cooking a roast chicken (or turkey for that matter) dinner, the stuffing is my most favorite part of the meal. It’s no stretch then to imagine why this would be my favorite casserole!
It contains all the elements of my favorite meal! Tender pieces of chicken. Buttery, crisp edged bits of stuffing, flavored perfectly with onion and celery, and all of those beautiful stuffing flavors!
It was really only a matter of time before I downsized it and I thought I would get it in before the weather starts to turn really hot. Yep, its almost salad weather!
We are actually having the odd day where the temperatures are in the mid to high 20′s which is fairly warm. You don’t want to be heating up your kitchen cooking casseroles when that happens! So this was one of my last hurrah’s before the hot weather descends upon us!
I love celery. Its one of my favorite hot weather vegetables and you will always find a bunch of it in my refrigerator. I love to eat it raw as sticks, with or without dip. Sometimes I stuff it with cheese or peanut butter. It has such a lovely crunch.
Mom always said it was impossible to eat celery politely. Raw celery is such a noisy thing to eat. I say just eat away. Enjoy. Manga! Celery is an integral part of most salads and actually things like casseroles and stuffings like this one!
I normally de-string my celery. I hate the strings getting caught in my teeth. To do that you need to grab the strings with a sharp knife at one end, and just pull them down the length of the stalk. Easy peasy.
You can just throw the strings away. Celery strings can sometimes be exceedingly chewy. De-stringing it can make even the most unpalatable piece of celery a pleasure to eat.
The celery and onion for this recipe are cooked slowly in a small amount of butter. You only want to soften them, not brown them. They are then used to help moisten the stuffing along with the butter you have sautéed them in.
You can of course add other vegetables if you wish. Chopped carrot goes well as do chopped mushrooms, which I know are technically not a vegetable but meh. They work well.
Today I used some stale hotdog buns for my bread. You can use any kind of bread you wish, but the hot dog buns worked beautifully. Stale bread rolls would also work. You will want about 3 heaped cups of bread.
This forms the basis of your stuffing. Mmmm . . . stuffing.
Sorry! I got distracted. Aside from that you will need a variety of good dried herbs. Summer savory, thyme, sage, parsley. Celery seed. I know that not everyone has access to summer savory. If you can’t get that then use a bit of poultry seasoning.
That reminds me, I need to replace my Bell’s Seasoning that got left in the UK. I love Bell’s poultry seasoning and I always make my own. Its the best poultry seasoning.
It is great in stuffings, on chicken, fish, etc. I use it all the time. It has a lovely zippy flavour that I just love.
Once you get this all mixed together, the sautéed vegetable and butter mixture. The shredded chicken. The bread. You need to add some stock just to moisten it a bit.
Bear in mind I said moisten. You want it to be moist and not dry without being soggy. Nobody wants soggy stuffing.
This makes just enough for two people, or for one person with one meal and then a leftover meal. I served it with a boiled new potato and some broccoli, cauliflower and butternut squash. It was perfect.
Stale bread, butter softened celery and onion, a variety of herbs, seasoning and tender poached chicken mixed with a tiny bit of stock and baked to give you one very delicious and simple entrée. What’s not to love about that!
Amish Chicken & Stuffing (Small Batch)
Yield: Serves 2
Author: Marie Rayner
PREP TIME: 10 MINCOOK TIME: 45 MINTOTAL TIME: 55 MIN
I downsized my favorite chicken bake to feed only two people. Its fabulously tasty and easy to make. Just throw it together and pop it into the oven.
- 1 large chicken breast fillet, poached in some chicken stock and cooled (reserve the stock)
- 4 stale hotdog buns
- 1/4 cup (60g) butter
- 1 small onion, peeled and chopped
- 1 stick of celery, including some leaves, washed, trimmed and chopped
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp celery seed
- 1/4 tsp dried parsley
- 1/4 tsp crumbled dry sage
- 1/4 tsp dried thyme
- 1/4 tsp summer savory (or savory)
- butter to dot
- Preheat the oven to 350*F/180*C/ gas mark 4. Butter a small (7-incn square) casserole dish. Set aside.
- Melt the butter in a saucepan. Add the celery and onion. Cook over medium low heat to soften without browning. Stir in the salt, pepper, celery seeds and all the herbs. Set aside.
- Crumble the hot dog buns into a bowl. Shred the chicken and add. Pour the butter mixture over all and toss together to combine. Add a bit of your reserved stock, taking care not to make it soggy. You just want it to be moist,
- Pile into the prepared baking dish and dot with butter. Cover tightly with a lightly greased sheet of aluminum foil.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 30 to 45 minutes. Delicious!
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