Thursday, July 20, 2017

Make-Ahead Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole

Utilize leftovers and spend a little bit of time prepping ahead, and you can have this casserole in the freezer, ready and waiting for you to throw it into the oven on one of those too-busy nights! 
  • 2 C cooked chicken, diced or shredded
  • 2 large slices deli ham, roughly chopped or torn
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tbsp flour
  • 1/4 tsp ground mustard (see note, below)
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • dash pepper
  • 3/4 C milk
  • 3 large slices deli swiss cheese
  • 1/2 C breadcrumbs
1.  Spray inside of small oven-safe casserole dishes or cocottes with cooking spray.  Spread chicken evenly along bottom of each.  Sprinkle ham evenly over tops. 
2.  In a small saucepan, melt butter over medium-high heat until just bubbling.  Add flour and seasonings, whisk until fully incorporated, being careful not to burn.  Add milk all at once.  Continue whisking until flour is fully incorporated and sauce has thickened, about 3-4 minutes. 
3.  Pour white sauce over chicken-ham mixture in each casserole dish.  Top with slices of cheese, tearing or cutting to shape if necessary. 
4.  Cover with container lid or foil.  Casseroles can be refrigerated for a day or frozen for a few weeks.  To bake: remove from fridge or freezer and place on counter to start thaw.  Preheat oven to 350°F.  Remove lid from dish and top casserole with breadcrumbs.  Bake at 350°F for 25-30 minutes, or until heated through (if starting from frozen, this may take longer).  

Robyn's notes: if I were making this again, I would change the white sauce a bit.  I would leave out the ground mustard and after adding the milk would stir in a Tablespoon of Dijon mustard.  I felt like the finished dish was simply missing something, and I find that Dijon in chicken cordon bleu helps add the needed depth.  Italian breadcrumbs will taste best, if you only have plain you can add Italian seasoning and some dessicated grated Parmesan cheese (in the green plastic container, you know what I mean).  Watch me demonstrate this recipe on youtube!

*** 3 Stars: Good. At least one of us liked this enough for me to make it again, but not often