First, gather your ingredients. I used 4 (large Costco-sized) chicken breasts sliced into smaller strips, the cream of celery soup, the cream of mushroom soup, and 2 cans of water. What I didn't have was the box of Uncle Ben's long grain wild rice. I did have a box of Rice a Roni Rice Pilaf which I thought might just work, so I gave it a whirl.
|(Note: I didn't have a small can of the cream of mushroom, so I used 2/3 of a bigger one I had on hand)
Next, lay the raw chicken pieces into the pan
Cover with foil and place in the oven at 325º for 2 to 2 1/2 hours. (The original recipe called for a temp of 350º but I think that might have a tendency to evaporate all the liquid and/or dry out the chicken according to some response posts). So I just knocked back the temp a bit to make sure. The next part was hard. The NOT PEEKING part. (Remember that Mervyn's commercial "open open open"...)?
My hubby came home and was about to poke his head in the oven to see what was smelling so good, and I stopped him like he was about to disarm a bomb. WAIT... you can't peek! It's the rules. Phew, that was a close one. (The look on his startled face was absolutely priceless). After I explained myself he thought that was pretty funny. Too bad smell-o-vision monitors haven't been invented yet, because this really does make the house smell fabulous by the way! Finally, it was time for me to peek. What would I find? Had it worked? Hopefully I had not destroyed our entire dinner in one fell swoop??...
Goodness no! Besides smelling fantastic, it looked like it turned out pretty good. The chicken was very tender and the nice part about it was the rice was all ready to go, no extra pan to have to make the side in. I scooped it onto plates and waited for the verdict...
And... the family LOVED it. It had a very good, creamy flavor. I had never used cream of celery soup before this, but I really liked how this turned out. Only small issue was the rice. The Rice a Roni rice pilaf was tasty, but got a little mushy/soft. None of us really minded that much, but I bet the original recipe of the Uncle Ben's long grain wild rice, (which normally cooks for 25 min) or any slower cooking rice would of held up it's texture a bit better with this long cooking time. Printable recipe for this dish found here
Other than that I think we have a bonafied family winner. The kids ate it all up and it's pretty hard to find one meal that pleases everyone around here. It even made some yummy left overs hubby took to work for lunch. Just remember, whatever you do... no matter how much you want to... DON'T PEEK!!!!