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Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Chicken, Broccoli and Penne Casserole

I made this casserole on Sunday night and it was okay, nothing to special. The recipe comes from the April/May 2008 Cook's Country. To me the casserole was really nothing more than a glorified canned soup recipe. It wasn't bad it was just boring. The magazine's recipe called for ziti, but penne was the pasta I had on hand.
Chicken, Broccoli and Penne Casserole
4 slices hearty white sandwich bread, torn into pieces
8 garlic cloves, minced
2 1/2 cups grated Asiago cheese
5 Tbsp. unsalted butter, 2 Tbsp. melted
Salt and pepper
1 lb. Penne Pasta
1 onion, chopped fine
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup white wine
3 cups whole milk
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut crosswise into 1/4" slices
12 oz. broccoli florets, cut into 1-inch pieces
Pulse bread, 2 minced garlic cloves, 1/2 cup Asiago and melted butter in food processor until coarsely ground. Set aside.
Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 400 degrees. Bring 4 quarts water to boil in large pot. Add 1 Tbsp. salt and pasta to boiling water and cook until nearly al dente. Drain in colander and rinse under cold water until cool.
Melt remaining butter in empty pot over medium heat. Cook onion until soft, about 5 minutes. Add remaining garlic and red pepper flakes and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in flour and cook until golden, about 1 minute. Slowly whisk in wine and cook until liquid is nearly evaporated, about 1 minute. Slowly whisk in milk and broth and bring to a boil. Add chicken and cook until no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Off heat, stir in remaining cheese.
Microwave broccoli, covered, in a large bowl until bright green and nearly tender, 2 to 4 minutes. Stir broccoli and drained pasta into pot and season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a 13 by 9 baking dish. Sprinkle with bread crumbs and bake until bubbly and golden brown, about 20 to 25 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes and serve.

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