I thought after last year, I was done being the football food/place provider. NO-O-O-O…I did several posts on football/game day/sports event food last year. So, here I am thinking: no more football. No more having to scurry around to feed the boys…..nope. One of the other wives has decided she is going outlet shopping this weekend. I scratch my head here – which is worse? Guys gathered for football and cooking for them or, going to a huge outlet and shopping. To be honest, I’m going with the shopping as being the worst. I’ll be happy to take a nice walk in the woods or hide in the bedroom and read.
TIP But anyway, whole chickens are on sale around here. So I have bought several, put in the pressure cooker, pulled off the skin and -. Put the pulled off, cooked chicken into freezer bags (2 cup amounts) to pull out to use for future casseroles and chicken salad. You can also, if you find pre-cooked rotisserie chickens on a good sale, do the same thing with them. You can also use the large cans of chicken breast meat packed in broth if there is a good sale on that.
That being said, the guys are getting chips, salsa, pretzels and for their tummies at halftime, Hot Chicken Salad. Hot Chicken Salad is probably the Original Church Lady meal. It is the kind of casserole taken to potlucks, church dinners, left at homes in time of bereavement or birth of a child or recuperation from an illness. It is homey, easy, redolent of all those things dear to a Southerner or Midwesterner’s heart: mayo and canned creamed soup. Don’t turn your nose up…this really is good. Picky eaters suck it up. I like to serve with warm slices of French bread and a salad and fruit salad for dessert.
It’s called hot chicken salad because it has many of the ingredients of cold. It is easy to assemble and takes about 25 – 35 minutes to bake. At half time, I know of four guys who are going to demolish this and wipe out the baking dish with leftover bread. Their “fruit salad” will be a bowl of apples and bowl of grapes.
Hot Chicken Salad Casserole
1 cup of mayonnaise (can use low fat)
1 can of cream of chicken soup or mushroom soup
1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese
1 tsp. lemon juice
4 cups of diced cooked chicken
1/2 cup of minced celery
1/3 cup of finely minced onion
1 green onion, sliced
1/2 cup of sliced almonds
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 13 x 9 inch baking dish. In a bowl combine the mayonnaise and soup; blend well. Stir in the cheddar cheese, lemon juice. Add the chicken, celery, onion, green onion and almonds; mix. Taste and adjust seasonings, adding salt only as needed, then transfer to prepared baking dish. Bake 20 minutes until hot and bubbly. Remove from oven, add topping, and bake an additional five minutes.
Toppings include: 1 – 1 ½ cups potato chips, or sleeve of crushed Ritz crackers mixed with some butter, or 1 cup Panko bread crumbs, or dry bread crumbs, or shredded cheese. The most used topping is the crushed potato chips. I like to save a tablespoon of the almonds to add on top at the end, when I add the chips. A garnish of fresh minced parsley or green onion adds a nice touch.
Note: You can do a search for “football” on my blog to pull up other dishes such as calico beans, Asian pulled pork, apple cake, vegetarian chili.