Thursday, December 10, 2015

Christmastime Emergency Meal

I am one of those weirdo people who buy things when they are cheap and I buy it in bulk.  A couple of months ago chicken quarters were 39 cents per pound in 10 pound packages, so I bought 70 pounds of chicken.  Some of it was cut into thighs and legs and frozen individually to be packed in large freezer bags , but most of it was cooked, removed from the bone and sealed in meal sized vacuum bags and then frozen.

On nights like tonight when I have been out and about during the day, it is so simple to grab a pack of the cooked chicken and have the beginnings of a meal. Since I also had a ton of broccoli florets frozen from an earlier sale I had the beginnings of chicken divan.  I do not keep condensed soups on hand and instead make this sauce from Soup or Sauce mix using the amount in the recipe to equal 1 can of soup, but I am posting the recipe as it is in the original recipe from a cookbook. I got the book before we were married. (No idea what it was since the cover has been gone forever, but it is one of those spiral bound organization cookbooks)

Chicken Divan
2 cups cooked diced chicken
2 cups broccoli florets
1 can condensed cream of chicken or cream of mushroom soup
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon sherry
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 cup grated cheese
1 cup cracker crumbs
2 tablespoons butter

Put the chicken and broccoli in an oven safe casserole dish and toss to mix.  Mix the soup, lemon juice, sherry, Worcestershire sauce and mayonnaise together in a small bowl.  Pour over the chicken and broccoli mix and stir thoroughly.  Put the grated cheese over the mixture then top with the cracker crumbs. Dot with the butter and place in a 350 degree oven for about 30 minutes until everything is hot and bubbly.

To be honest, I use about 2 times the broccoli called for because when we have this and have nothing else with it I add extra veggies to it.  I also use only about 1/2 cup of cheese and forgo the cracker crumb topping simply because we find it unnecessary for us.  Everyone has their personal preferences and I would always tell anyone to do what works for their family.  You might need additional salt and also need pepper.  Sometimes I throw in a dash of cayenne because we like heat, but not everyone does.  I also have friends who add curry powder to theirs.  I think if I added curry I would add red curry paste rather than curry powder, but again that is personal taste.

This makes a very filling comfort meal, like grandma used to make (except neither of my grandmothers ever made main dish casseroles).  This is a great "throw together and go wrap presents while it bakes dish".  Which is exactly what I am going to do as soon as I finish this post.

Give it a try and you might like it.  Add or subtract things to make it your own and have a meal baking while you get some Christmas done.

And just in case you use the Soup or Sauce mix and make it a little too watery like I did, it tastes really good served on toast.  All the excess goo soaked into the bread and the toast gave it a bit of needed heft.

Years ago I made a Christmas mix of odd Christmas songs.  This one is one of my favorites from the mix, and yes it is odd.

There is no decoration because I didn't take a picture before dark and the house is just too dark at night to photograph well.


  1. I have never heard a version of Carol of the Bells that in didn't like--including this one.

  2. I love it as a traditional song, but I do like this version also.

  3. Good God woman, you bought an entire chicken farm! Chicken never goes on sale that cheap here. If it did, well I would probably buy the farm too. LOL

    1. Yep, I have a boatload of chicken in the freezer. And TheHub doesn't like chicken much. Too bad for him!


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