Saturday, January 30, 2010

Day 30: Middle Eastern Chicken Casserole

I can't believe I have been doing this for a month. Other than it taking a lot of time, it hasn't been to bad--I would even say it has been fun! I have learned a ton! If I only did this on camping trips I would never have learned as much as I have. Consistency has been the key. I get to learn from yesterday's mistakes instead of trying to remember what I did wrong on last year's camping trip.
Many thanks to everyone for your comments on yesterday's biscuit attempt. It is really nice to feel like I am among friends. I have found a few other biscuit recipes that sound good, and I am in the process of trying them, and hopefully they will be successful. I do have one question for all of you out there in cyberspace, how long does it take for your biscuits to cook? The recipes all say 10-15 minutes, but for me it has translated into 30-40 minutes. Is that normal, or am I having more problems that I thought I was? Pipe up everyone--dish out your secrets--I certainly won't have any after all this is over! :)
Today's recipe is one I learned in a Middle Eastern cooking class I took last year. Talk about good food. I am combing the Internet for more recipes. Mediterranean cooking is just amazing. I have even learned to like feta cheese. Don't judge this recipe by the picture--please. The pic is terrible and doesn't do the dish justice. It is definitely worth trying.

Middle Eastern Chicken Casserole
12" dutch oven

4 chicken breasts, cooked and cut up
1 12 oz. pkg. medium egg noodles, drained
2 jars marinated artichoke hearts, drained
Parmesan cheese
1/2 green bell pepper, chopped
2 onions, chopped
1 small jar chopped pimentos, drained
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup chicken broth
4 tbs. butter
4 Tbs. flour
1/2 tsp. salt
dash of pepper
4 cups milk

I boiled the chicken in my DO then cooked the noodles in the same water. In your DO saute the onions and green peppers until tender; set aside. I used about 25 coals. In the same DO melt the butter, add the flour to make a roux; stir for one minute. (At this point I would remove some of the coals so the milk doesn't burn.) Add the broth and the milk. Stir until it thickens. This takes about 10 minutes, and it doesn't get really thick. Just cook it until you notice a difference in the consistency. If it gets too thick the whole dish is dry. Mix the noodles, veggies, pimentos, chicken and artichokes together in a bowl. When the sauce is thickened, add the noodle mixture to it and stir well. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake for 1 hour. I used 10 coals on the bottom and 16 on top (it was cold outside). You will need to replenish the coals part way through.

The Finished Product

Seriously folks--the pic doesn't do this one justice.
What I Learned

This is the first dish that I have had to worry about replenishing the coals. I know--I'm a chicken. It was easy, I just had to plan ahead and have the coals ready on time. Easy peasy lemon squeezy!

The Review

This was one of those dishes that called for the ingredients to be layered, and I would have done it in my kitchen, but it didn't change the result to mix it all together. I only used about a jar and a half of artichokes because I wasn't sure if my kids would like them. It turns out they did. This was really good. The flavor was unusual, but not weird. This will go into our meal rotation. Grade: B+


  1. Good Morning
    I enjoy your blog, your biscuits. You used 26 coals, 18 on top 8 on the bottom, which is about 350 F my recipe calls for a temp. of 450 F in a 12" DO that would be 33 coals, with 22 on top and 11 on the bottom. It also helps to pre heat the lid for a few moment. I cook my dinner rolls at 375 F and they take about the same time as when in the kitchen. Keep up the good work, you inspire me with your recipes, and your comments on them.

  2. Hi! I go along with Wayne on the higher heat, but watch the tops of the biscuits, when they turn a little brown, its time to remove the bottom heat. Bake top omly.
    For cooking over one hour, I start new charcoles after 45 minutes. Don't just add to old ones, change out to all new. (see my Thanksgiving turkey, on my blog.


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