Jeanette - Off The Cuff

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Blogger at: and -- My name is Jeanette, and I was born in Sweden, but unlike the famous Muppet, I am not a professional Swedish Chef. I actually studied design and photography. I also was a freelance indie-rock critic for several magazines from 1998-2005, and had an in-house PR company for a while. Cooking is in my DNA--my dad's brother was a chef and their father was a pastry chef, my mom's mother was a caterer, who published a cookbook of traditional Finnish breads and pastries when she was 92. Everyone else in my family loves to cook, and we're not afraid to experiment. I have a yen for interior design and remodeling.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Hawaiian Chicken casserole

hawaiian chicken This is one of my mom’s best-loved dishes, and the one we request multiple times a year when we visit our parents.   My dad's co-worker had shared this recipe with them, and perhaps she got it from a Swedish cooking magazines.  Of course, we still lived in Da Ol’ Country.  So, go figure – Hawaiian chicken, via a Finnish woman, who got it from a Swedish nurse. The Hawaiian part is the pineapple, but other than that, I don’t suppose this is an actual Hawaiian chicken dish.  Then again, I’m not Hawaiian, so someone may correct me if needed. 
Granted the ingredients may sound a little peculiar, but trust me, it’s so savory and delicious, it may just be one of your go-to recipes when dinner guests come over. 
4 chicken breasts (with or without skin, depending on your preference) (or 12-15 chicken tenders)
1 cup heavy cream
8-12 rings of fresh pineapple slices (or 1 can if fresh can’t be gotten)
1-2 TBSP Dijon mustard
1 egg yolk
Seasoning salt
Fresh ground pepper
First season each chicken breast with some Seasoning salt.  You could go all gourmet, but seriously, Lawry’s is really good on here, so the paprika should be a part of the equation. Then the two options are to either pre-bake the chicken in a casserole dish, which you will use again for the completed dish, or to fry the chicken in a skillet with some olive oil until cooked all the way through and reading 160 with a meat thermometer.
When the chicken is prepped, this would be a good time to get some long-grain white rice going in a pot or rice cooker.  For four chicken breasts, I’d probably use about 2 cups of uncooked rice and 4 cups of water.
hawaiian chicken (1)
Layer pineapple rings at the bottom of the casserole dish. 
hawaiian chicken (5)
Then put the fully cooked chicken on top (I used chicken tenders, because I always have them in the freezer.) 
Pour heavy cream into a bowl, and whip it until soft peaks form.
 hawaiian chicken (2)hawaiian chicken (3)hawaiian chicken (4)
Beat in the egg yolk and Dijon mustard, and whip another minute or so until you get a nice golden colored cream mixture.
Spread out the cream-mixture over the top, like you’re frosting a cake.
  hawaiian chicken (6)
Now, put it all back in the oven at about 400 for about 15-20 minutes until the cream bubbles up and browns. 
hawaiian chicken (7)
Serve over white rice, and don’t forget to ladle on that creamy goodness all over your rice… (And add a vegetable of your choice, to offset the ultra decadent cream-sauce!) 

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