This casserole was so good and so comforting. It definitely reminds me of my childhood. The tender chicken, hearty pasta, the creamy cheesy sauce and then topped it with a nice toasty panko crumb topping. There’s almost nothing better than this. Give it a try.
½ cup Fontina, grated or other cheese that melts well, such as Gruyere
¼ cup Parmesan cheese
2 cups of thick Chicken Gravy, home made or 1 can Cream of Chicken Soup
½ Onion, chopped
½ cup Mushrooms, sliced (Optional)
1 tsp Thyme
2 – 3 cloves Garlic, minced
10 oz good pasta – fettuccine, penne or cellentani or other preference
1 ½ cups Panko Bread Crumbs
3 Tbls Butter melted
Parsley, chopped, garnish
Preheat oven to 350
In a sauté pan, on medium heat, salt and pepper the chicken and cook until just brown, about 8 minutes on each side. Remove
In the same sauté pan, slice and chop the onions and cook until tender. If using mushrooms, cook until brown.
Meanwhile, if making your own chicken gravy – make a roux (3 Tbls of butter, 3 Tbls flour and cook until just lightly browned, slowly add 2 cups of chicken broth salt and pepper, whisk and cook until thickened) and add more broth if needed.
In a large pot, add a little salt and cook the pasta a little more than al dente, not quite done cooking, because the pasta will continue to cook when you bake it. Drain the pasta.
In a large bowl combine the chicken, cheese mixture and chicken gravy.
In a 9×13 baking dish grease with butter. Put a layer of pasta on the bottom, then a layer of the chicken cheese mixture, a layer of pasta and lastly a layer of the chicken cheese mixture. With a fork, gently mix the pasta and chicken cheese mixture together. If needed, add a spoonful of pasta water.
In a small bowl combine the panko breadcrumbs and butter and mix until the crumbs are well coated. Sprinkle over the pasta chicken. Bake for about 30 minutes until thoroughly heated through.
Sprinkle chopped parsley over the casserole and serve.
* To save a little time, use a rotisserie chicken in this casserole.
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