Monday, October 15, 2012

Poppy Seed Chicken with Havarti Cheese

You know those friends who are rockstars and completely keep you afloat during life's biggest trials? Well, my friend Julie is a complete rockstar friend. She's probably not going to like the fact that I'm bragging on her here but, that's okay. During our crazy exhausting NICU days she would not let me get away with telling her we didn't need anything. She went grocery shopping for us, let herself into our house, stocked our fridge and freezer with food, made us her awesome homemade granola bars, and left hot ready-to-eat meals for us after some really long days. She blessed us big time!

One of the meals she made for us was Poppy Seed Chicken with Havarti Cheese. It was a hit with Tom and I. I got the recipe from her via Vanderbilt Wife a while back and finally got around to making it last Monday. This recipe will be in our regular dinner rotation now. Thanks Jules!

1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cubed
3 oz. Havarti cheese, diced or shredded (I used sliced deli Havarti)
4 1/2 T butter, divided
3 T flour
1 1/2 c. milk
2 tsp. chicken base or bouillon (I used sodium free Herb-Ox bouillon packets)
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
1 T poppy seeds
1/3 c. plain yogurt (I used plain Greek yogurt)
1/3 c. soft bread crumbs (I used panko bread crumbs)

Melt 3 T butter. Whisk in 3 T flour. Whisk for one minute until bubbly. Whisk in milk; stir continuously for 5 minutes or until thickened. Add salt, pepper, and boullion. Remove from heat.

Stir in chicken, cheese, and poppy seeds. Keep stirring until cheese is melted. Fold in yogurt. Pour into buttered casserole dish.

Top with bread crumbs; dot with butter. Cook at 350º for 40-50 minutes. Serve over rice or noodles (I served over white basmati rice).

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