Oftentimes food connects us with special memories, and that’s certainly true for today’s recipe.
YEARS ago, back when I was a teenager, my younger brother was born. My maternal grandmother had passed away when I was in kindergarten, so my great aunt came in townto help out my mom. In so many ways my Aunt Gige was like a surrogate mom and grandmother—being there for my mom, connecting us to our family roots, watching out for us, sending us thoughtful cards and gifts, and always being a truly supportive, loving influence in our lives.
When Aunt Gige came to stay with us after my brother’s birth, one evening she made a delicious Dill Chicken recipe that I remember to this day. However, as with many of the recipes from that era (and today), it used condensed soup, an ingredient I no longer stock in my pantry. Anyway, several months ago after creating my own homemade version of cream of mushroom soup, I remembered Aunt Gige’s baked dill chicken and I thought, “maybe I can re-create that dish with my new soup recipe?” And voilà … here’s the result—a delicious, REAL food main dish your entire family is sure to enjoy!
- 1⅓ cups homemade “condensed” cream of mushroom soup
- ⅔ cup milk
- 1 cup sour cream
- 1 tablespoon dry dill weed
- 2 pounds chicken breasts (about 4 breasts and tenderloins)
- butter to grease the baking dish
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 teaspoons butter
- 1 cup sliced almonds
- Preheat oven to 350F degrees.
- Grease bottom of a 9x13 glass, pyrex casserole dish.
- Cut the breasts in half and place them and any breast tenderloins on the bottom of the casserole dish.
- Warm homemade condensed cream of mushroom soup.
- Whisk in milk then sour cream and dill weed.
- Pour warm dill sauce over the chicken and bake for 30-40 minutes.
- While the chicken is cooking, lightly brown the almonds in 2 teaspoons of butter and set aside. (Watch these carefully ... they brown quickly and burn easily.)
- When the sauce is bubbly and the chicken is cooked thoroughly, remove the casserole from the oven and let cool for 5 minutes.
- Serve chicken over brown basmati rice or whole wheat noodles.
- Garnish with browned, sliced almonds.
There are lots of ways to garnish this chicken dish. I know my Aunt Gige used croutons, but I thought almonds would be a healthier, crunchy twist!
I hope you enjoy this recipe from my family to yours. For me cooking is one of the ways I express love to my family. Certainly Aunt Gige showed me love in so many different ways including when she cooked. Although my Aunt Gige passed away in 2011, I think of her often. Thank you, Aunt Gige, for all your love. This recipe is for you!
Do you have a family recipe that evokes happy memories? Feel free to share the recipe and memory below.
Kitchen Tips & Resources:
- A good quality whisk helps mix the homemade condensed soup, milk, and sour cream together.
- Pyrex casserole dishes are a classic for any kitchen. You can find them at Amazon, Target, or most retailers that stock cookware.
- I love my Thermapen splash proof, instant read thermometer! It works great for getting a quick read on whether your chicken is ready. That said, there are lots of other instant read thermometers on the market from all different retailers—just make sure when you buy one that you calibrate your thermometer to the proper temperature.