I had just put this casserole in the oven when my husband walked in the door from work today. The first words out of his mouth were “Man, something sure smells good!”. I responded with “It could be the bacon, or the sautéed mushrooms, spinach and onions. Or possibly the Parmesan cheese cream sauce.” It was at that moment that I knew without a doubt tonight’s dinner was going to be ah-mazing. Oh momma and was it ever!
Chicken Florentine is a classic dish that’s made by pounding chicken flat, rolling spinach, cheese and mushrooms inside, breading the rolls and then frying them. Much like Chicken Kiev or Chicken Cordon Bleu. I found the idea for a casserole version and could tell that with some adjustments it was going to be fantastic with much less work than the traditional rolled type. Chicken Florentine is normally served with rice, but I thought some nice mashed potatoes would be a much better vehicle for soaking up all the delicious creamy sauce in this dish. Mmmmmmm yummy!
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
2 tablespoons butter
3 teaspoons minced garlic
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of mushroom soup
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1/2 cup half-and-half
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
3 cups fresh baby spinach
8 ounces fresh mushrooms, sliced
1/2 cup onion, minced
1/2 cup white wine, divided
6-8 strips bacon, cooked and chopped
3/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Place bacon in a cold non-stick skillet and cook until crispy. Remove bacon to drain on a paper towel covered plate, reserving drippings.
- Strain out any bits from the bacon drippings and return to the pan with butter. Over medium heat, saute onion until just softened. Add spinach and mushrooms. Allow mushrooms to cook slightly and spinach to wilt down (about 3 minutes). Add 1/4 cup of white wine and allow to steam cook the veggies another 2-3 minutes or until spinach is fully wilted and mushrooms are soft.
- Arrange mushrooms/spinach/onion mixture in the bottom of a 9×11 baking dish.
- Chop bacon into bite sized bits. In the same pan, stirring constantly over medium heat mix in the garlic, lemon juice, cream of mushroom soup, Italian seasoning, half-and-half, Parmesan cheese, bacon and remaining white wine. Bring just to simmering then remove from heat.
- Arrange chicken breasts in the dish on top of the spinach/mushrooms and cover with the sauce mixture.
- Bake 30-40 minutes in the 350° oven, then top with shredded mozzarella cheese and cook an additional 10 minutes or until sauce is bubbly, cheese is melted and chicken registers 160° on an instant read thermometer.