Do you remember those little frozen dinner packets that you would throw into boiling water until they were piping hot? Freezer Queen was the brand we had in the Hollow. There was roast beef and gravy (my favorite), chicken or turkey with gravy. Every once in a while we'd have Chicken a la King too. For a frozen dinner, they weren't bad - especially over home-made mashed potatoes. And, they were cheap for a quick dinner. Home cooking from a plastic pouch! I can see us all gathered around the boiling water waiting for supper. You have to remember, this was back in the day when frozen dinners were still 'new' and considered special. Of course, these days, there are some great gourmet meals in the freezer section. And, some not so great. So, choose wisely.
To this day, Chicken a la King still feels like comfort food to me. I've made a short cut version using cream of mushroom soup. But, since Winter is still raging, I thought you would enjoy this vintage recipe that takes a little more time.
Chicken a la King
3 cups cooked chicken, cut into chunks
1 and 1/2 cups Chicken Broth
1 package frozen peas (10 oz)
1/2 lb. mushrooms, sliced
1/3 cup butter, margarine, or chicken fat (gasp!)
1/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon Ac'cent
dash black pepper
1 and 1/2 cups cream
1/4 cup Sliced Pimentos(2 oz. can, drained)
Cook peas according to package directions and set aside. Heat chicken broth to a boil and set aside. Heat butter in a saucepan over low heat. Add mushrooms. Cook slowly about five minutes. Remove mushrooms, leaving the drippings in the pan. Mix together the flour, salt, Ac'cent and pepper. Gradually add to drippings in pan. Heat until bubbly and cook 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Add gradually, stirring constantly, the Chicken Brothand cream. Return to heat and cook until thickened. Add the chicken, peas, mushrooms and Sliced Pimentos. Cook slowly until chicken is thoroughly heated. Serve over toast.