Artichoke Chicken

When I went back to work full time, I became friends with the woman who ran the in-house café at work.  Terri is 100% Italian as I am, and we immediately hit it off.  The food Terri cooked was Italian homestyle, and so much better than any institutional food I’d ever had.  I would often order food to take home for supper because it was that good.

Whenever artichoke chicken was on the menu, I knew for sure I’d be taking it home for supper that night.

One night I cooked this dish for company and threw it together in a hurry.  I thought the mixture looked a little thin as I was spreading it over the chicken.  Nevertheless, it was absolutely delicious and we all enjoyed it.  Roger helped me clean up after dinner and asked me, “What is this?” as he held up the food processor full of chopped artichokes which I had neglected to put in!  So, I guess we had “Three-Cheese Chicken” that night which only proves how flexible this recipe is!

My company was sold several years ago; and, as is usually the case, we were downsized.  Our headcount was then so low the company could no longer justify the cost of an in-house food service.  We were all sorry to see Terri move on to another organization; but, before she left, she shared (among many others) her recipe for artichoke chicken with me.  Now it’s my turn to share it with you…

Artichoke Chicken

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  • 1 can (14 oz.) water-packed artichoke hearts, well drained and chopped
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (or Italian blend – Romano/Parmesan/Asiago)
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise (do not use reduced-fat or fat-free mayo)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • Dash garlic powder
  • Dash white pepper
  • 4 boneless chicken breasts weighing 4 to 5 ounces each

In a medium bowl, combine the artichokes, cheese, mayonnaise, garlic powder, and white pepper.

Place chicken in a greased baking dish.  Cover evenly with artichoke mixture.

Bake, uncovered, at 375o for 30 to 35 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink in the center and juices run clear.

Fran’s Note:

  • I usually buy a 2-lb. package of boneless chicken breasts which always contains 3 huge breasts.  I cut them in half horizontally and that makes 6 breasts weighing approx. 5 1/3 ounces each.  They cook in 30 to 35 minutes.  You’ll need to adjust the baking time if your chicken breasts are larger.

College Corner Notes from Sara:

  • This recipe really can’t get much easier.  Buying an Italian cheese blend saves time since you won’t have to grate cheese, and leftover cheese can be used with pasta or for making chicken parmigiana (recipe coming!).
  • Buying a family size pack of chicken and freezing individual packets of chicken breasts is economical and convenient when you know you’ll be cooking lots of chicken.  Be sure to plan ahead and defrost in the fridge over a couple of days—do not leave out on counter to defrost!
  • Whenever baking chicken, thinner is better because the cooking time is shorter.  The thicker the chicken, the more chance it will cook unevenly.  A good way to check if chicken is done besides cutting it open in the middle (you shouldn’t see any pink) is to stab it with a fork.  If the fork pierces to the bottom of the breast easily, it is done—there shouldn’t be any significant resistance.  This takes experience, so use both techniques to check on doneness until you feel confident.

Source: Adapted from an allrecipes.com recipe by my friend Terri and given to me

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