When I used to think of a noodle bake my mind would instantly go to beef. Lately there’s more lean ground chicken available at a decent price so instead of beef, I’m changing things up. Since I love chicken in Mexican dishes with big creamy cheese and jalapeno flavours, I thought I’d give this kitchen experiment a try…and I was very happy with the results. Now this recipe contains a whole lot more cream and calories than I usually cook with, but sometimes I like to splurge. If you’ve been following my blog for a while you’ll see the recurring theme of a bit of a crisp topping on top of something which is soft. I should have photographed it with the salad we served this up with, but it smelled so good and we were in a hurry to start dinner!
Here’s how I made enough servings for about 12 people.
- 900 grams (2 lbs) of extra lean ground chicken
- 1 1/2 cups of diced onions
- 1 340 gram bag of dried egg noodles
- 1 – 28 oz. can of plum tomatoes
- 1 cup of Kraft Velveta cheese
- 1/2 cup whipping cream
- 1 1/2 cups of grated old cheddar cheese
- 1/8 cup of finely chopped jalapeno peppers (from a jar)
- 1 1/2 cups or more Italian breadcrumbs
- 1 cup of grated cheddar cheese
- about 1/8 cup or more melted butter
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter the bottom and sides of a rectangular pan (eg. lasagna size). Set aside.
Boil water and cook the egg noodles in a separate pot according to the package directions. Drain the noodles, toss with about a tablespoon of butter. Cover and set aside.
In a large frying pan, brown the chicken until thoroughly cooked. Add the diced onions and fry until the onions are soft and you get some of them crisping up…not burnt though! Add the plum tomatoes, crumbled Velveta cheese, whipping cream, cheddar and diced jalapeno peppers. Stir and simmer until it is evenly mixed. Add this chicken mixture to the drained and cooked noodles, stir and then turn the mixture into the pre-buttered dish.
In a small bowl mix together the breadcrumbs, cheddar cheese and melted butter until it is evenly distributed. If the crumbs appear too dry, add a little bit more melted butter. Spoon this crumb mixture evenly over top of the noodle mixture and bake uncovered in the oven for about 15 minutes – just enough for the cheese in the crust to melt a bit and crisp up.
Serve with a fresh garden salad. Enjoy!