Have you ever been to the Grassland Foodland grocery store on Hillsboro Road? In the front left corner is Miss Daisy’s Kitchen, a treasure trove of prepared comfort foods and delicious sweets. When I was on maternity leave, a friend brought us some of Miss Daisy’s Poppy Seed Chicken, and I’ve been hooked ever since. As I was looking through my cookbooks this week, I came across this recipe and immediately wondered if it could be as good as Miss Daisy’s.
The recipe comes from Homecoming: Special Foods, Special Memories compiled by the Baylor University Alumni Association. I’m a Trinity girl myself, but my grandmother and great-grandfather graduated from Baylor, and their Christmas Lemon Pecan Cake recipe is featured on the back cover! Of course, Mimi sent me a copy of the book for my collection, and after my latest perusal, I know I’ll be back to try some more recipes.
While there were too many poppy seeds, Husband and I thoroughly enjoyed this dish and I’ll happily make it again. It’s a step below Miss Daisy’s, but that could be because (1) I’m not Miss Daisy and (2) I made a slightly healthier version. My smaller recipe made about 5 servings, and it was delicious served over rice (the first night) and over noodles (the second night).
Substitutions: Since chicken breasts come in a pack of three (which annoys me to no end… I feel like Steve Martin in Father of the Bride ranting about hot dog buns), I adjusted everything to match this amount of chicken and to lower the fat content a bit, and I baked the casserole in an 8″ x 8″ dish. I used 1 can reduced-fat cream of mushroom soup, 12 oz. light sour cream, 3 tablespoons poppy seeds, 1/3 cup sherry… and all the Ritz crackers and butter, because that’s the best part!
Sorry, I forgot to take a picture… but has there ever been an appetizing picture of a casserole?
Poppy Seed Chicken
4 chicken breasts, cooked and cubed
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 (16 oz.) container sour cream
4 tablespoons poppy seeds
1/2 cup sherry wine
1 sleeve buttery round crackers, crushed
4 tablespoons butter, melted
For best results, start the night before by combining the first 5 ingredients in a bowl, mixing until blended. Allow to sit in refrigerator overnight. When ready to cook, preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a 9 x 13 baking dish and spread chicken mixture evenly in dish. Sprinkle the crushed crackers evenly on top. Drizzle the melted butter over the crackers. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until casserole is bubbly and top is golden brown.