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Poppy Seed Chicken

Several years ago my son's wife shared this delicious casserole recipe with me. It is one of my Ryan's favorites and quickly became a favorite here at Holly Hill too. I prepare it often for large groups and have served it many times for 30 people. It's one that doubles or triples well and customers often ask for the recipe. Hope that you enjoy it also.
(Serves 8-10)

2 c. lite sour cream
1 can Cream of Chicken soup
1 ½ T. poppy seed
1 c. rice cooked as usual in 2 c. water
4 c. cooked and cubed chicken breast
Salt and pepper to taste
*1 onion, 2 sticks of celery and 1 red pepper sautéed in a little olive oil

Mix together in or all of the ingredients, add chicken last so it doesn’t break up too much. (I often use a whole chicken that I have cooked overnight in the crock pot. Cool in the morning and remove bones, cube meat and measure the 4 cups.)
Pour mixture into a 9X13 casserole that has been sprayed with a non-stick spray.
Top with: 1 ½ packages of crushed buttery crackers (you know the ones) mixed with 2/3 stick of melted butter.
Bake at 350* for 30 min. until crackers start to turn golden and filling is bubbly around the edges.

*These ingredients are optional, I add them to jazz it up a little, you can substitute a small jar of pimento for the red pepper.

To double this recipe I use 1 whole chicken and 4 breasts and double the other ingredients. If the mixture seems a little dry I moisten it with some buttermilk, which blends with the sour cream flavor well.

Mexican Crustless Quiche

By omitting the crust we can cut down on calories in this delicious breakfast dish. I also like the addition of cottage cheese for more protein. It is easy to double the recipe so I often bake an extra and package up individual servings for the freezer. This makes a quick breakfast or light lunch with a topping of fresh salsa, avocado, and sour cream.

8 eggs
16 oz. cottage cheese
8 oz. cheddar cheese, shredded
8 oz. jack cheese, shredded
½ c. flour
1 t. baking powder
1 – 7 oz. can chopped green chilies
3 green onions, chopped
¼ c. melted butter

Whisk the eggs together with the cottage cheese in a large bowl. Mix the flour and baking powder with the grated cheeses and add to the eggs along with the rest of the ingredients. Mix well and pour into an oiled 9X13 baking dish and bake at 350 degrees 40-45 minutes. The mixture will be golden brown and just set in the middle. You can check for doneness by inserting a butter knife in the middle. It should come out clean. Cut into squares and serve hot. You can also bake in two pie plates for 35 minutes and cut the quiche in wedges for serving.

Heart Healthy Lasagna

A recipe that I developed because it’s not only easy to prepare but packed with nutrition. Missing is the thick layers of cheeses and eggs. Cutting out white flour products in our diet is important. The heavy taste of whole wheat pasta is lost in other flavors and carrots balance the acidity of tomato sauce. Browning the carrots will bring out natural sugars; they are a hidden secret ingredient and nutrition boost. I use the canned milk because it is lower in fat than cream but adds back a richness to the dish. This recipe makes a large amount but you could easily adapt it to a 9X13 sized pan.

3 – 1# rolls of frozen turkey, thawed (buy the one with the lowest fat content, also you could substitute 1# lean ground beef)
2 - 26 oz. cans spaghetti sauce with mushrooms
1 ½ c. - water, divided
½ c. – canned milk
1# - whole wheat lasagna pasta
4 c. packaged grated Mozzarella cheese
2 c. packaged Parmesan cheese
6 - Peeled and sliced carrot
1 T. - olive oil and 1 T. butter
2 - cloves fresh garlic, sliced

Using a large skillet, sauté turkey and or beef until very brown. You may want to do this in two batches. Add spaghetti sauce and simmer. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook at a boil until only partially cooked, about 7 min., drain.
In a medium sized skillet sauté carrots in oil and butter until they begin to brown. (You can speed up their cooking time by covering the pan for the first 5-10 minutes.) As the carrots begin to turn color add garlic being careful not to brown the garlic, stir and sauté another 2 min. Puree carrots and garlic in a blender with the ½ c. water then add to spaghetti sauce along with the 1 C. water and the milk.
In a 10”X15” lasagna pan ladle enough sauce to cover bottom of pan. Add a layer of pasta, sprinkle heavily with mixed cheeses and repeat layers until all ingredients are used, reserving cheese for top layer. (You may not need all the pasta, 1# is a little to much) Bake covered at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake at 325 degrees another 25 minutes or until set. Let cool for 15 minutes before serving.