I've been making variations on this recipe for Chicken Tetrazzini since Cooking Light published it in 2003. It was in an article about freezer-friendly casseroles that included a recipe for stuffed shells that has also become a family favorite.
This morning, I decided to google some other recipes for Chicken Tetrazzini to see if I could come up with some new ideas, and I came across this silly video about seducing a man with Chicken Tetrazzini:
I have to say, I don't see Chicken Tetrazzini as terribly seductive... I think of it as kid-friendly comfort food! This is a dish I've brought to new mothers and friends in mourning. It works especially well for that sort of thing since it freezes well and can go straight from the freezer to the oven. Cooking Light's recipe makes a double-batch and includes the instructions for going from freezer to oven. I've included my a-little-less-light-but-a-little-more-fiber single casserole variation here.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Cooking spray
- 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
- 1/2 cup finely chopped celery
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 5-6 cups sliced mushrooms (16 ounce package)
- 1/4 cup dry sherry
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 3/4 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
- 1 1/4 cups grated fresh Parmesan cheese (divided)
- 1/2 cup 1/3-less-fat cream cheese
- 4 cups hot cooked Barilla-plus spaghetti
- 3-4 cups shredded or chopped cooked chicken breast
- Tiny pinch of nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- cooking spray
- 1/2 cup whole wheat panko
- 2 tablespoons parsley
- Preheat the oven to 350°.
- Heat the olive oil in large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add the onion, celery, garlic, thyme, pepper, salt, and mushrooms. Sauté 4 minutes or until the mushrooms are tender.
- Add the sherry and cook 1 minute. Remove the vegetable mixture, including any liquids, from the pot.
- Melt the butter in the pan.
- Gradually add the flour to pan; cook for about 3 minutes, whisking constantly.
- Gradually whisk in 1 cup of the broth. Continue to whisk until all the lumps are gone.
- Stir in the remaining broth. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat.
- Add one cup of the Parmesan cheese and the cream cheese, stirring with a whisk until cream cheese melts. Add the pasta, chicken, vegetables, nutmeg, salt and pepper and stir until combine.
- Taste and adjust seasonings.
- Pour the mixture into a large baking dish coated with cooking spray.
- Combine the panko, parsley and remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Sprinkle evenly over the casserole.
- Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove casserole from oven; let stand 15 minutes.
It is not a terribly photo-friendly recipe, but the family loved it. Last winter, the boys were not the mushroom fans they are now. Tonight they agreed that we should add it to the short list of recipes we make regularly. That's a pretty high bar!