Mrs. Aileene’s Chicken Tetrazzini

Dear Boys,

Back in the day when I was a Girl Scout, we sang a song that went like this:  “Make new friends, but keep the old.  One is silver and the other, gold.”

You just can’t have too many good friends.  They are treasures indeed.

On the day that one of my dearest was moving three states away, Mrs. Aileene showed up at our house with a pan of brownies and a hug.  She said she thought I might could use cheering up that day.

And so began a sweet and rich friendship that has seen us through lots of laughs and tears and joy and growth.  She is a picture to me of God’s grace.

This tetrazzini is her recipe.  She often has  a pan of it in the freezer, ready for whatever occasion presents itself.

DSC_0150

First you need eight cups of chicken.

DSC_0153Next are the bell peppers.  Two cups chopped of them.  I like to use one red and one green for the color, but any color will do.

DSC_0154After you wash and dry the pepper, use a sharp knife to cut out the stem.

DSC_0155

Then cut the pepper in half.

DSC_0158I usually give the pepper a good shake to remove the seeds and trim the white membrane.

DSC_0159Next cut strips that are about the same width.

DSC_0160Turn these and cut into small pieces.

DSC_0167Do the same with the red.

My peppers were quite large and yielded a little more than a cup of each color.  Bell peppers are very mild, so I went ahead and added them to the dish.

DSC_0170Now you need to cut 2 cups of chopped onion.

DSC_0173Next you need 6 Tablespoons butter.

DSC_0177Melt it in a large skillet.

DSC_0178Then add the chopped veggies.

DSC_0162

While this is going on, boil a pot of water and cook one pound spaghetti.

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Every once in awhile, stir the peppers and onions.

DSC_0182Next you’ll need 4 cans cream of mushroom soup.  Empty these into a large bowl.

DSC_0185Fill two of the empty soup cans with milk.

DSC_0190Whisk together

DSC_0192until well blended.

Your vegetables are probably finished by now.  You’ll know they are if the onions are no longer white but are instead translucent.

DSC_0189If it looks like this, you’re good to go.

DSC_0194The last thing you’ll need before you start mixing is 16oz. Monterey Jack cheese.

DSC_0195I used my Kitchenmaid attachment to grate it, but a good ol’ hand-held grater and some muscle will do the trick, as well.

DSC_0196Most likely, your spaghetti is finished cooking and can be drained.

Now you’re ready to mix everything together.  This is a large recipe, so it’s going to take a BIG container.

DSC_0199Add the spaghetti, the chicken, the cheese,

DSC_0200the soup mixture,

DSC_0201and the vegetables.

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Sprinkle in sal and pepper to taste.  About a teaspoon or so of each should be good.

DSC_0210Then you need to gently stir until everything is mixed well.

DSC_0214This recipe is enough to fill two 9×13 pans.  You can bake one and freeze one or take one to a friend, or you can make both of them and throw a dinner party for lots of friends.

DSC_0215Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

DSC_0220I like to pull it out at this point, uncover, and sprinkle with parmesan cheese.  Then bake for 10 minutes more uncovered.

DSC_0224This is what they call “comfort food.”  It brings to my mind the comfort of dear friends, both old and new, who make life so very, very good.

If you make a dish and share some with a friend, you won’t regret it.

I love you,

Mom

 

 

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2 responses to “Mrs. Aileene’s Chicken Tetrazzini

    • I DO love my family and you dear friends so much, Mimi, but mess up plenty in what I do and say. I’m thankful for lots of grace. 🙂 Thank you for always being so encouraging!

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