Never Fail Chicken Casserole

Never Fail Chicken Casserole


Easy to put together on a busy weeknight, with plenty of passive cooking time. A new staple for us! The rice does get pretty “soggy” so if you are someone who likes individual grains of rice, this is NOT the recipe for you.


  • 1 (10 3/4 ounce) can cream of chicken soup
  • 1 (10 3/4 ounce) can cream of celery soup
  • 1 (10 3/4 ounce) can cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 soup can water
  • 1 1/2 cups uncooked rice
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 chicken, cut up (I used breasts)
  • salt and pepper


Combine soups, butter, water and rice in buttered oblong casserole dish. Salt and pepper chicken and place in mixture. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 1/2 hours.


Recipe: Bird’s Chicken Piccata

Aren’t babies the cutest?  This is the newest member of my family: my niece, Alessandra Susana…named after moi.  I am lucky enough to have my sister and her little family (and my parents!) live close enough to get together for dinners on Sunday evenings.  Isn’t that a blessing?  Every child should be able to know their family…even their crazy uncles who come out of nowhere and put their faces close to yours!!  Here is one of my mom’s favorite meals, she requests it when we get together for her birthday:

Bird’s Chicken Piccata


  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 16 ounces boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1/2 cup fat-free chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons capers
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 lemon, cut into wedges


  • 1

    Combine flour, garlic, salt, pepper, and paprika in a plastic grocery (or large ziplock) bag. Add chicken and shake to coat well. Set aside.

  • 2

    Heat butter and olive oil in a large skillet over med-high heat. Shake excess flour from chicken pieces and place in skillet and saute for about 5 minutes, until golden brown. Do not overcook. Remove chicken from pan, and set aside, covered to keep warm.

  • 3

    Remove all but 2 Tbsp of fat, retaining browned bits of breading. Stir wine and broth into pan drippings, deglazing the pan.

  • 4

    Add lemon juice, capers, and parsley. Return chicken to skillet, tossing to coat. Reduce heat to medium, and continue cooking until sauce thickens slightly and chicken is cooked thru. Serve immediately with fresh lemon wedges.


Recipe: Easy Tamale Pie

I’ve come to the realization that so many of my recipes are not very “chefy” despite calling myself a Barenaked Chef.  But when you have 2 children and a busy day, it’s hard to pass off foie gras as a dinner choice.  So, I offer you, yet again, a comfort food recipe.  Not fancy, but yummers.

Easy Tamale Pie

4-6 Servings


  • 1 1/2 lbs ground beef
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 11 ounces Mexican-style corn, drained
  • 8 ounces tomato sauce
  • 4 ounces chopped green chilies
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 6 ounces mexican style cornbread mix


  • 1. Preheat oven to 375. In large skillet, brown ground beef, onion and garlic over medium high heat until meat is brown and onion is tender; drain. Reduce heat to medium low. Stir in corn, tomato sauce, green chilies, chile powder and salt. Remove from heat.
  • 2 In small bowl beat sour cream and egg until well blended. Stir in 1 cup cheese. Combine sour cream mixture with ground beef mixture. Spoon into lightly greased 9×13 pan.
  • 3 In medium bowl, prepare corn bread mix according to package directions. spread corn bread batter ovedr casserole. Sprinkle with remaining 1 cup cheese. Bake, uncovered, 30 minutes or until heated through and corn bread topping is golden brown. serve warm.

Recipe: The Lady and Sons’ Chicken Fingers

Let me tell you something: These chicken fingers are the best I’ve ever made.  Ever.  I will admit to not making them often, but I know a good chicken finger when I bite into it, and this one fits the bill.  Yes, it’s Paula’s recipe.  No, it isn’t diet food.  Hush and eat a salad tomorrow.


  • 16 chicken tenders or 4 boneless chicken breasts, cut into 4 equal strips
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 3 cups self-rising flour
  • peanut oil or lard 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons prepared yellow mustard
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice or 1 tablespoon juice form 1/2 a lemon
  • horseradish, to taste


1. Sprinkle flour with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Stir to combine. Dredge chicken in flour, dip into buttermilk and back into flour.

2. Preheat oil to 350 degrees. Fry fingers in deep hot oil 5 to 7 minutes or until golden brown. Serve with honey mustard for dipping.

3. Honey mustard dressing:

Combine all remaining ingredients together except the lemon juice and stir well. Thin to pouring with lemon juice. Store in refrigerator.

Pin it to Pinterest from here

Print it from here


Mama Iuliucci’s Famous Meat-A-Balls

Mama Iuliucci’s Famous Meat-A-Balls

Sometimes you want a recipe that you just look in the pantry to make.  Late nights when you don’t want to deal with fancy ingredients, short weeks when you are trying to stretch your budget, or…tonight?  I had all of these ingredients in the fridge or pantry.  Plus, these little guys are delicious.  I made a ton and froze  about 3/4 of them and they were still delicious after having been in my freezer.  You can’t ask for more than that from your meatball, folks.


  • 2 lbs lean ground beef
  • 8 -10 slices white bread, broken into small 1/2 inch pieces (or you can use rolls or any stale bread you have and want to use up)
  • 2 eggs, slightly beaten
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder (or to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon italian seasoning (or to taste)
  • 2 teaspoons parsley flakes (or to taste)
  • 1/4-1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese (or Locatelli)
  • 1 -2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4-1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • olive oil (for frying) or vegetable oil (for frying)


  • Mix all ingredients gently in a large bowl until well combined.

  • Roll meatballs 1 1/2- 1 3/4″ in diameter.

  • Heat about 1/4″ of oil over medium heat in a large frying pan.
  • Fry meatballs in oil, rolling frequently, until evenly browned and juices run clear.
  • Drop meatballs in your favorite sauce  and let simmer for awhile to flavor sauce or just serve with your favorite pasta and sauce.


You can also bake or broil these if the frying part is too much of a hassle– I use my broiler pan if I bake them, so the fat drips down and away from the meatballs.