Creamy Spiced Chicken Casserole


When I first discovered my sensitivity to over 60 foods, I sulked for a day. I had hit another hurdle in my journey to health. How could I enjoy food with so many limitations? Meals made with the staples in my diet such as dairy, eggs, tomatoes, gluten, and olive oil were no go zones. This turned my life upside down. I loved my food, what could I eat now?


I complained to my closest friend about the situation. She empathised with me. The next morning at the back of my house there were two large bags filled with groceries. My friend had left a heap of foods I could eat – rice milk, coconut milk, gluten free flour, buckwheat flour, egg replacer. Alternative foods are not cheap, so I was grateful for her help. More than anything, I no longer felt alone in this.


Since that time the way I cook and what I cook with has changed. At times I crave rich, comforting food. This recipe is my way of satisfying that craving. It is possible to enjoy tasty, rich food even on a restricted diet. This is just one alternative.


If you struggle with food sensitivities or intolerances, don’t give up. It is worth the perseverance to enjoy good health.


Ingredients

1 kg chicken thighs or breasts

Large onion

2 cloves garlic

2 chicken stock cubes

2 teaspoons Garam Masala

2 teaspoons Cumin

2 tablespoons oil

½ cup gluten free plain flour

2 cups lactose free milk

300ml lactose free cream

1 cup grated lactose free cheese


Method

Place oil in a large pan on medium heat. Add diced onion and garlic, cook until onion is transparent. Add spices, heat until fragrances are released. Cut chicken into 3 cm pieces (or larger if you prefer) and add to pan along with chicken stock cubes. Brown chicken. Add flour to pan and mix with other ingredients until brown.

Slowly add milk, stirring after each addition to avoid lumps. When sauce thickens, add cream and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to combine cream into the mix. Add grated cheese and let simmer for at least half an hour.

Pour the chicken and sauce over steamed vegetables.


Notes

Plain flour: any flour can be used, but I suggest one which will not dominate the flavour of the dish

Milk: regular milk or rice milk are also suitable.

Cream: regular cream or an alternative can be used

Cheese: regular cheese or an alternative cheese can be used.


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