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Healing Kitchen

Chicken Divan
A classic at church suppers and potluck dinners, this is the quintessential American leftovers dish. The typical Chicken Divan is cooked chicken and vegetables in a rich sherry-flavored cheese sauce, topped with cream (or sometimes mayonnaise). Surprisingly, the original recipe contained quite a bit of broccoli, so the dish actually had some pretty good nutrients going for it--vitamin C and beta-carotene, specifically. However, the healthful effect is sort of ruined when you make the cheese sauce with 1/4 cup of butter (in addition to the cheese) and you top the whole thing with 1/2 cup of heavy cream. Our solution was to make a very slimmed down cheese sauce (still full of cheese, but no butter) and eliminate the heavy cream topping. The results were a dish whose total fat is cut from 33 grams to under 7 grams (with the cholesterol cut by 104 milligrams). This Divan is still divine.

The Ingredients

     6 cups broccoli florets  1 cup chicken broth  1/3 cup flour  1 cup low-fat (1%) milk  3 tablespoons nonfat dry milk  2 tablespoons dry sherry  1/2 teaspoon salt  1/4 teaspoon pepper  1/4 teaspoon nutmeg  1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese  10 ounces cooked chicken breast, shredded
1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray 7" x11" baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. In a steamer set over a pan of simmering water, cook broccoli 4 to 5 minutes, or until tender.

2. In medium saucepan, whisk broth into flour until smooth. Add milk and nonfat dry milk, and cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until sauce is lightly thickened, about 3 minutes. Stir in sherry, salt, pepper, nutmeg, and Parmesan.

3. Arrange broccoli in pan. Scatter chicken over broccoli. Spoon sauce over chicken. Bake 25 minutes, or until bubbling hot. Makes 4 servings

PER SERVING
BEFORE
AFTER
Calories
548
295
Dietary fiber (g)
3.3
3.4
Total fat (g)
33
6.7
Saturated fat (g)
19
2.7
Cholesterol (mg)
185
71
Sodium (mg)
1017
830

Author: the Healing Kitchen staff
Date Published: 05/29/2001
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