Yum Peaceful Cooking: Chicken and Spinach Casserole and a GIVEAWAY!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Chicken and Spinach Casserole and a GIVEAWAY!


Sometimes its the quick and simple things that are closest to my heart and soul. Especially when it's been a long day or week....or I'm just flat out tired (and maybe crabby)! One of the reasons why this recipe made it to my hearth was the fact that not only is it quick and simple but it doesn't include a single can of cream of something soup. I'm not sayin' that I never use the stuff....but I think they're overly used when it comes to casseroles. Once you see how simple it is to not use a cream soup as the base for a casserole, maybe....just maybe you'll choose the better other choice. If you're concerned about fat....use milk instead of the half and half. If you're concerned about flavor...just add your favorites. Just don't add the MSG.

You know...casseroles bring back a lot of memories. They're sorta nostalgic for me. I think (I could be wrong)...but I think casseroles peaked in the 60's, and even continued with a bit of momentum in the early 70's. I remember eating them quite a bit. More often at friends houses than my own. One of the most famous casseroles from my generation is the dreaded tuna casserole. Sir Sportsalot still enjoys it. I don't have a favorite. But I do have a love for them when time is of the essence. Especially with this one because the baking time is so minimal.

Now all I need to really bring the memories flooding back a drop leaf table. My brother and I use to eat on one of those for every meal until we moved into a bigger house after my first sister was born. At breakfast time, the leaf was down (you don't need a lot of room to eat when you only have a bowl of oatmeal or cereal), and we'd get yelled at for playing with it....I mean, come on...when you're a kid, if something could move....it became a toy of sorts, right?

Speaking of "toys"....how would you like to win a nice Gift Certificate to buy yourself something fun? Yes, you heard me right. I'm hosting a Giveaway for CSNstores.com and they have a ton of stuff to choose from. Not just kitchen stuff (although you know that's where you'd find me) but stuff for your home, kids, garden, pets, office...etc etc. Yep, you can even find a drop leaf table over there.

Here's how it works.....US and Canada Residents (sorry for leaving the rest of you out)

Prize: $75.00 Gift Certificate for any CSNstore (they have hundreds). Shipping and handling charges are not covered with the gift certificate. But you know what? They have a ton of stuff that ships free.

Leave a comment -  Make sure that there's a way for me to get in touch with you. If I can't find you, I can't give you your prize and I'll have to give it to someone else. That would be such a bummer (well, for you, but not for the replacement winner haha). If you don't want to participate in the giveaway, but you want to leave a comment, just specify that in the comment.

It's always nice to have new followers but it's not necessary. But hey, if you don't already follow me, and you decide you'd like to....sure I'll give you an extra entry. Just leave a separate comment stating so.

I have a Peaceful Cooking Facebook Fan Page....if you wanna follow me there, sure...I'll give you another entry. Just leave a separate comment stating so.

Stumble this page and you'll get an extra 2 entries. Just leave a separate comment stating so

There are other hoops you can jump through if you'd like...the old...Twitter, Facebook Share..etc etc. Whatever you want to do, go for it. Just leave a separate comment stating what you did.

Contest ends: Sunday, October 17, 2010 at 11:59 p.m. PST. The winner will be announced 10/19/10

And now....let me introduce you to a new fun casserole dish. I found this recipe in my Everyday Food mini magazine. I've been finding a lot of recipes in there lately, but hey...I subscribe to the darned thing so I figure I'd better get some use of them, right?

Chicken and Spinach Casserole
Printable Version

(I wish I could say that I baked that bread, but I'd be lying)


2 cups torn bread
1 tablespoon olive oil
Salt and Pepper
Oil (whatever you like to use for sauteing)
4 cups packed spinach
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove (or 2 or 3) minced
1/4 cup white wine (or chicken broth)
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1 1/2 cups half and half
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
1 cup shredded or chopped pre-cooked chicken

Preheat oven to 450' F Lightly spray or grease a 2 quart casserole dish

In a medium bowl, drizzle the bread with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Season with a bit of salt and set aside.


In a medium sized skillet, heat 1 1/2 teaspoons of oil over medium high heat. Add the spinach, season with a bit of salt



Cook, while stirring until it's all wilted (and it looks like you hardly have anything left). Drain the spinach in a colander until it's cool enough to touch. Squeeze all the water out. Trust me...lots of water comes out of a little spinach. It always surprises me


Then give what's left of your spinach a rough chop.


Ya, that's all that's left. Doesn't look like much does it?

Clean out the pan you used for cooking the spinach and saute the onions and garlic until tender. (Actually, you can do this while the spinach is cooling off in the colander.) Add the white wine (or chicken stock) to the onions and continue cooking until almost all of it has evaporated. This will take about 5 minutes. Add the flour to the onion mixture and cook while stirring for 30 seconds.

Gradually whisk in the half and half (or milk if you're slimming things down). Squeeze in a bit of fresh lemon juice (it says 1/2 teaspoon...but honesly....it can handle a bit more than that....maybe a teaspoon or two). Bring the mixture to a boil.


Remove from heat and stir in your chopped spinach and chicken.

Let me say something about the chicken. The more flavor your cooked chicken has, the more flavor your casserole will have. Roasted or rotisserie chicken is best. Of course you can use boiled or baked....but it just won't be as flavorful. That's all.

Season with salt and pepper. Pour into your prepared casserole dish. Top with the bread crumbs that you set aside earlier.


They just look so rustic, don't they? Oh...and check this casserole dish out....


Isn't that just the coolest? It was my mother in-laws. I bet she got it way back when casseroles were the rave! Back when just about every dinner table had a casserole on it at least once a week. I imagine Sally (my mother in-law) coming home after volunteering for PTA and throwing together her ingredients and within an hour, this baby graced the table and fed 2 adults and 3 kids. (of course Sir Sportsalot doesn't ever remember seeing this dish before. (men!)).

Bake until the bread is golden brown and the mixture is nice and bubble....about 10 minutes or so.


I really enjoyed this dish. It was like eating croutons on your meat and veggies (who doesn't like croutons?). I think next time I'll add a few mushrooms. Not too many because I don't want to throw off the sauce to meat / veggy ratio and end up with a dry casserole. Hmmm...then again, I could increase the sauce by half and really go to town on more stuff in this thing. See? That's what's so cool about casseroles. They are so versatile. Just change up a few things and make it your own....to represent your families tastes.

This is my entry this week for The Hearth and Soul Blog Hop.

H‘nSgirlichef

If you haven't checked it out, I highly recommend it. You are bound to find lots delicious recipes you're gonna wanna make. And maybe you'll have one you'd like to share with the hop too. How fun would that be?

92 comments:

  1. This sounds very good, thanks for sharing.

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  2. Casserole looks delicious.
    I'd love to enter the giveaway.

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  3. Thanks for sharing with the Hearth and Soul hop. It's so true, isn't it, that it's so hard to find a recipe for casserole made without the can of soup that you'd nearly think it was impossible. Similar to you, I solved that problem when I reintroduced beautiful cream into my life. Now all of my casseroles and gratins and such are perfectly creamy and stable in the oven.

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  4. i've bookmarked a ton of your recipes so far i've made the lemon blueberry buckle, which came out great except that i used frozen blueberries and the were wet so the batter turned dark when i mixed it but it tasted delish my husband loved the topping with that lemon glaze :) and the poor mans stroganoff is next up on the list, oh and the cheeseplosion burger OMG we cannot wait to try that one as well....

    this is my 3rd seperate comment to enter your giveaway but i forgot to leave an email :) her.knowledgequest at gmail dot com

    thanks.keep cookin it good

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  5. Am having fun collecting casserole recipes, since I have an extra mouth to feed for a year while he goes to
    college nearby. Gotta stretch those food dollars. Thanks for entering me in your giveaway. If I win, here I am. kmjas1 at hotmail.com Mary

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  6. I declare that the art of the caserole is NOT dead! Perhaps the advent of the slow cooker has decreased market share?

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  7. Sounds like a great recipe!
    I'm a follower already! yippiee
    I'd love to enter your giveaway! CSN rocks!!

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  8. I actually love the sound of this casserole, Dani...those big hunks...drool! Fabulous! And I haven't ever had any luck w/ winning any CSN stuff...here's to trying again ;) Thanks for sharing it with the hearth and soul hop, as well!

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  9. I'm also a FB fan. It's ok I'm not leaving my email address, right??? =)

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  10. I'm a follower so count me in. What a great give-away.

    Your casserole is calling my name. I love everything about it. I can't stop looking at that lovely brown bread on top.
    Sam

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  11. I love your casserole recipe, I will have to give it a try. I am a new follower. Bring a bowl of Chili to my Chili Cook Off at The Country Cottage, just come on over.
    Thanks for sharing.

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  12. This looks really good!! Thanks for this great giveaway, too! Hope I win! Sure could use it!! :)

    april_vereb@yahoo.com

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  13. Tweeted about the giveaway! :)
    (aprilv2009)

    april_vereb@yahoo.com

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  14. Mmm. I haven't made a casserole in a long time. This one looks great!

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  15. Love, love, love anything with spinach. Not only healthy but so tasty. These sounds like a winner of a recipe. Perfect for a chilly fall dinner.
    psrrn@aol.com

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  16. This looks very good. Even though I'm not a spinach fan, I can eat it in casseroles.

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  17. I am always on the lookout for a casserole without the canned stuff - this looks delicious! thanks for sharing it and your giveaway with us at the hearth and soul hop!

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  18. What a delicious looking casserole and a great giveaway. Glad I found you through Hearth and Soul.

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  19. Besides the casserole, I love your comments. They reminded me of the casserole my Mom made when we were kids. It was only called "casserole" as in question: "what are we having for dinner, mom? answer: "casserole". I never knew there were others until I grew up. I still make it sometimes. Mon's was ground beef, onion, tomato sauce, green pepper and macaroni. Over the years, I added mushrooms and canned tomatoes and sometimes used tomato soup. Yum. I have ground beef in the freezer. Guess what we're going to have pretty soon?

    Regards,

    Suzan
    officeguru@gmail.com

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  20. The dish sounds delicious, especially for this time of year. And I'd love to be entered into your giveaway

    tommygirl828 (at) gmail (dot) com

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  21. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  22. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  23. I'm a new follower with this account (Mare/TommyGirl)

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  24. follow on twitter as tommygirl and tweeted - http://twitter.com/tommygirl/status/27161297154

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  25. That's a great looking casserole - looks very rustic and comforting.
    Sue

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  26. I love, love spinach. This looks like a nice alternative to the typical casserole.

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  27. I've long been a follower (and lover) of your blog.

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  28. Mmm, I love casseroles in the fall! Looks good! Your giveaway is awesome, too, thanks!
    jmgallo831@yahoo.com

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  29. I'm already a loyal follower :)

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  30. big hunks - love the sound of that

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  31. Wow, great tips. Thanks for the one on spinach.

    Please enter me in your contest. I am in your HB5 group.

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  32. Just subscribed to your blog. This looks great. It's just so fun to cook (and eat). Looking forward to updates.

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  33. Great giveaway..thank you..

    ramvinayak_81@rediffmail.com

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  34. Like your blog on FB..

    ramvinayak_81@rediffmail.com

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  35. Following via GFC...

    ramvinayak_81@rediffmail.com

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  36. Hi Danielle! I have to agree with you on the canned stuff in casseroles. I try to abridge most recipes I find to be made all from scratch, except of course for my husband's FAVORITE chicken divan that I made for his birthday dinner just like his mom made because it is his number one comfort food, but this one surely looks yummy! Thanks for sharing on the hearth and soul hop this week. I already follow you and alla that jazz, but I will certainly share your giveaway on my thoughts on friday link love at a moderate life this week! Alex@amoderatelife

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  37. Thanks for the giveaway! I could certainly use some new cookware!

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  38. I tweeted!

    http://twitter.com/#!/FakeGradSchool/status/27225265380

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  39. I blogged!

    http://quiltznhoez.blogspot.com/2010/10/dont-miss.html

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  40. Your casserole looks yummy!
    Thanks for the giveaway!
    ~Jenny~

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  41. Danielle, this will be on our menu soon... if not today, this week. Thanks for sharing. :) Great blog!!

    ~~Vicki - dutchmom4

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  42. I just "liked" your page on Facebook.

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  43. Yummy casserole. Can't wait for the cool season to start eating more "comfort" food. Please enter me in your giveaway. Thanks.

    happyacres at wowway dot com

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  44. Nice casserole and nice dish!!!

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  45. I subscribed to your RSS too!

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  46. Last but not least, I follow your blog on facebook.

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  47. You're on my blogroll and this dish is on the menu for tonight! All the ingredients are handy in my pantry or fridge and it sounds wonderful :)

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  48. That is so funny Danielle, as soon as I saw the picture of the casserole I said to myself, I bet that is one of those great breads that Danielle makes. I try hard not to use the canned soups also, I love coming up with my own sauces for casseroles. My mother made a lot of them also when I was growing up. I would love a chance at the giveaway.

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  49. I follow you on facebook and also with my Blogger Dashboard. Hope this gives me more chances at the giveaway.

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  50. WHAT AN AWESOME GIVEAWAY & CASSEROLE DISH! THANKS SO MUCH! kytah00@yahoo.com

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  51. FOLLOWING YOU ON GOOGLE FRIEND CONNECT AS "kytah00" kytah00@yahoo.com

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  52. LIKED YOUR BLOG ON FACEBOOK VIA ANGEL JACKLYN facebook.com/kytah00 kytah00@yahoo.com

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  53. 1/STUMBLED THIS GIVEAWAY USER NAME "kytah00"

    http://www.stumbleupon.com/su/3LKtzD/peacefulcooking.blogspot.com/2010/10/chicken-and-spinach-casserole-and.html

    kytah00@yahoo.com

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  54. 2/STUMBLED THIS GIVEAWAY USER NAME "kytah00"

    http://www.stumbleupon.com/su/3LKtzD/peacefulcooking.blogspot.com/2010/10/chicken-and-spinach-casserole-and.html

    kytah00@yahoo.com

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  55. TWEET http://twitter.com/#!/kytah00/status/27349905565 kytah00@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  56. SHARED THIS GIVEAWAY ON FACEBOOK VIA ANGEL JACKLYN facebook.com/kytah00

    http://www.facebook.com/?ref=home#!/kytah00/posts/168140573201351

    kytah00@yahoo.com

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  57. Just love your casserole recipe and I might just give it a try. Thanks for the opportunity for the great giveaway!
    gmissycat@yahoo.com

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  58. Liking you on FB!
    gmissycat@yahoo.com

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  59. Congratulations, gmissycat
    You are now following Cooking for My Peace of Mind GFC!
    gmissycat@yahoo.com

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  60. Following you on Twitter and tweeted too!
    http://twitter.com/#!/gmissycat/status/27358143939
    gmissycat@yahoo.com

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  61. Following you on Networked Blogs too
    gmissycat@yahoo.com

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  62. Subscribed and confirmed too!
    gmissycat@yahoo.com

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  63. Your Blog and giveaway are posted on my blog page here!
    http://gmissycat.blogspot.com/2010/10/cooking-for-my-peace-of-mind.html
    gmissycat@yahoo.com

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  64. What a great dish! It looks delicious! Please include me in your wonderful giveaway. I'm a Google follower.
    mzpst@att.net

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  65. you guys are all wonderful!!! Good luck to all of you. I'm just bummed that I can't enter my own giveaway. haha

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  66. I love spinach! This recipe looks delicious!

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  67. Great giveaway! Love your recipe, it looks yummy! :)
    milkncookiezzz@yahoo.com

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  68. Yum this recipe looks good! Thank you for the great giveaway!
    wakechick25(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  69. I follow your blog.
    wakechick25(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  70. I liked you on Facebook.
    wakechick25(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  71. I LOVE spinach! This gives me a new recipe to use it.

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  72. Yes, it sure is getting to be casserole weather, isn't it?

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  73. GREAT giveaway!!

    The casserole looks perfect for this upcoming season!

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  74. This looks delish! I have some chicken breasts leftover from dinner and now I know exactly what to do with them...yum!

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  75. I love, love casseroles and your recipe sounds like one I must try. Thanks for giving me a chance to win your generous giveaway!

    nblexp at gmail dot com

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  76. I follow you publicly on gfc

    nblexp (at) gmail (dot) com

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  77. Hi! I'm a new follower! Great giveaway and I can't wait to try some of your recipes!

    friedgreenpickles.blogspot.com

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