This recipe isn’t just a recipe, it’s more like a memory. My ‘surrogate’ Mother Helen (mentioned plenty around these parts!) has made this countless times throughout the years, and my Mother added it to her repertoire a few years back. So for quite a few dinners throughout the year, this dish is served up to me in both homes. No complaints there.
From looking at these pictures, you’ll probably agree with me that from start to the finish, it’s not a very attractive looking dish. And you’d be right. Large quantities of thick gloopy soup and breadcrumbs are no comparison to an aesthetically beautiful soufflé..but you can trust me when I say it doesn’t matter. Chicken and broccoli pie has its own seductive attributes. Can pie have attributes? No? Really? Ok…well, this one does.
Anytime this is made, it’s made in large quantities; none which have ever seen the light of the following day. This dish has never been associated with the word leftovers.
This pie/bake/casserole (whatever you’d like to call it) is incredibly easy to make, very filling and very addictive. It’s more than enough to serve on its own, and it’s perfect for a satisfying dinner for the cold winter months.
We double or triple it depending on dinner party size. Helen gave us this standard recipe is by Odlums (I omit the cheese and butter)
Ingredients (Serves 4 – 6):
3 – 4 Chicken breasts
Head of broccoli
2 x 295g of condensed chicken soup (we use a mix of chicken and mushroom)
1 heaped tablespoon of mayonnaise
125g breadcrumbs (or as much is required)
1tsp curry powder
1. Bring the chicken breasts to a boil and simmer for 15-20 minutes. Cut into strips.
2. Par-boil the broccoli and cut into florets.
3. Preheat the oven to 190c/375F/Gas Mark 5
Place the chicken strips in an ovenproof dish, and cover the strips evenly with the broccoli florets.
Mix the soup, mayonnaise and curry powder together, and pour evenly over the chicken strips and broccoli florets. You can smooth spread the mixture into the corners with a knife or a spoon if it’s a bit difficult to manage..it is crazy thick!
Then cover the chicken, broccoli and soup mixture with a layer of breadcrumbs. I don’t usually bother measuring…I just snip a corner off the bag and shake gently along the dish until everything is covered evenly.
I then cover the dish with tinfoil, and cook for 20 minutes. I then remove the tinfoil and cook for a further ten minutes to make the breadcrumbs crispy. Since I made chicken and broccoli pie for fifteen people, I used a very large dish from Viking Direct’s Cookware and Kitchen Supplies. This aluminium dish* is perfect when catering for large numbers. It cuts preparation and cooking time, as I can roast two chickens at a time, and cook brunch for several guests at a time, using Donal Skehan’s One Tray Artisan Full Irish. An invaluable kitchen accessory coming up to Christmas time. It’s a little snug in a standard oven due to the handles, so I would measure first before ordering.
The finished product! Please say you’ll try it…you won’t regret it and either will your guests.
On a completely unrelated note, how strange (but cool) is this exotic flower? When I was taking this picture, I felt like the flower was going to open up and bare venus flytrap-esque fangs and BITE me! Dramatic, I know.
Happy Monday, if there’s such a thing. x
♥ ♥ ♥