Pretty and delicious, Chicken Salad Stuffed Shells with Curry Dressing is a recipe that makes great use of left-over grilled chicken. This recipe makes great appetizer, lunch or light dinner fare.

The Salad:
1 12-ounce package jumbo pasta shells
3-1/2 cups cooked chicken – leftover grilled is perfect!
1 cup celery
1/4 cup green pepper
1/4 cup toasted almonds
1 tablespoon sweet pickle relish

The Dressing:
1/4 cup sour cream
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 teaspoon curry powder
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
Pepper, freshly cracked and ground

Prepare the ingredients:
Put the shells on to cook in salted boiling water while you prepare the rest of the dish. You want the shells al dente, still firm to the bite. When finished cooking; rinse and drain well.

Skin, bone and dice the chicken. Wash and finely dice the celery and green pepper.

Make the dressing by mixing the sour cream, mayonnaise, curry powder, lemon juice and coriander together until well blended. Season with salt and pepper.

Assemble the dish:
Combine the chicken, celery, green pepper, almonds and pickle relish with the curry dressing; toss to evenly coat. Stuff the well drained shells with the chicken salad. Cover and chill the filled shells for 30 minutes or until you are ready to serve.

This is gorgeous, plated into individual servings on a bed of shredded lettuce with a few cherry tomatoes, cocktail onions and olives to one side.

Yield: 6 servings

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Your family will love this delicious, creamy chicken recipe during asparagus season. It’s easy to prepare and won’t break the budget!

1-1/2 pounds fresh asparagus spears, halved
4 boneless skinless chicken breast halves
2 tablespoons cooking oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper, freshly cracked and ground
1 10-3/4-ounce condensed cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 375° and lightly grease a 9-inch square pan.

Place the undiluted soup, mayonnaise, lemon juice and curry powder in a small bowl and stir until well blended.

Wash the asparagus and remove the tough fibrous bottom portion. If desired, steam the asparagus until partially cooked. Place the asparagus in the prepared baking dish.

Add the oil to a skillet over medium heat and lightly brown the chicken on both sides. Remove the chicken, season with salt and pepper and arrange over the asparagus in the baking pan. Pour the sauce mix over the chicken and asparagus. Bake for approximately 40 minutes or until chicken is tender and juices run clear.

Sprinkle with cheese and allow to stand in a warm place for 5 minutes before serving.

Note: I don’t often cook with condensed soup, but for the busy cook, sometimes it’s a very worthwhile short cut. If you prefer not to use the soup, substitute about 1-1/2 to 2 cups of basic béchamel sauce recipe made with chicken stock instead of milk, for terrific results.

Yield: 4 servings.

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Asian garlic chicken recipe is a great way to deliver a delicious meal to the table in about 30 minutes. Leftovers are delicious and beat a burger for lunch at the office.

1/2 cup distilled white vinegar
1/2 cup chicken broth
10 large cloves garlic
2-1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
1/4 teaspoon pepper, freshly cracked and ground
4 chicken breasts, skinned and boned
2 teaspoons herbed seasoning mix or your own blend of parsley, oregano and basil
1 tablespoon sesame oil
3-5 bay leaves
Cooked rice

Prepare the ingredients:
With a sharp knife, remove any bits of ligament, tough fibers and excess bits of fat from chicken breasts. Season both sides of the chicken with the herbed seasoning mix. Place the vinegar, chicken broth, garlic, soy sauce and pepper in a small bowl and whisk until thoroughly blended.

Cook and serve:
Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and sauté about 4 minutes on each side, until lightly golden. Add the bay leaves to the pan and pour the vinegar mixture over the chicken. Reduce the heat to low and cover the skillet. Simmer the chicken until it is cooked, approximately 10 minutes. Remove the chicken to a warmed platter. Increase the heat under the skillet and boil for about 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove the bay leaves and season to taste with salt and pepper. Spoon the juices over the chicken. Serve with hot cooked rice.

Tip: Please remember to wash hands thoroughly after handling raw chicken. Clean all surfaces that have come into contact with raw chicken with very hot soapy water and rinse thoroughly with very hot water. I like to add a couple of tablespoons of bleach to the soapy dishwater to assist in killing germs.

Yield: 4 servings.

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You’ll be delighted by how easy this luxurious fast-fix chili recipe is to make. Chicken and great northern beans in a delicious creamy sauce is a welcome change of pace.

1 pound chicken breasts
1 medium onion
3 cloves garlic or 1-1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cans (14 – 16 ounces) great northern beans
1 can (14 – 16 ounces) chicken broth or stock
2 4-ounce cans chopped green chilies
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon pepper, freshly cracked and ground
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup heavy (whipping) cream

Bone and skin chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch cubes. Chop the onion. Mince the garlic if you’re using cloves. Drain and rinse the beans.

Place the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Sauté the cubed chicken, onion and garlic until the chicken is no longer pink.

Add the beans, broth or stock, chilies, salt, oregano, pepper and cayenne. Bring to a boil and immediately reduce heat. Simmer uncovered for 30 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in the sour cream and cream and serve immediately.

Tip: if the entire recipe isn’t needed for your meal, you can refrigerate or freeze a portion for later use. Before adding the sour cream and cream, remove 1/2 of the chili to a storage container. Reduce the sour cream to 1/2 cup and whipping cream to 1/4 cup and add them only to the portion that you’re serving immediately.

Gently reheat the stored portion at a later date and add 1/2 cup sour cream and 1/4 cup whipping cream just before serving. Reheating the chili after the sour cream and whipping cream have been added can “break” the sauce, creating a watery texture.

Yield: 4 – 6 servings.

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This lively recipe with orange juice and coconut turns warm, creamy bananas into a tropical dessert treat. A scoop of vanilla ice cream makes this a supreme indulgence.

4 medium bananas
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup orange juice, freshly squeezed preferred
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, freshly grated
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup cream sherry
2 – 4 tablespoons coconut flakes
2 – 3 tablespoon butter
2 – 3 tablespoons light rum, try coconut flavored :-)

Preheat oven to 450°. Generously butter a baking dish, reserving 1 tablespoon of the butter.

In a small saucepan combine the brown sugar, orange juice, nutmeg, cinnamon and sherry and warm over medium heat. Peel the bananas and cut in half lengthwise; place on prepared baking dish. Pour the sauce over the bananas; dot with remaining butter.

Bake the bananas, basting with the pan juices at 5 minute intervals, for 10 – 15 minutes or until the bananas are tender. Sprinkle with coconut flakes during the final 5 minutes of cooking.

Remove from the oven and drizzle with rum before serving.

Yield: 8 servings

*Magic: this recipe is exclusive to I Love You Recipes. It is from my personal, unpublished collection.

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