So, my daughter-in-law served this awesome dish and I was like, ‘I need this recipe, pronto!’

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound of fresh asparagus, peeled and sliced into 1-inch pieces
  • 6 slices of bacon, chopped
  • 3 cups of diced potatoes (approximately 1/2-inch cubes)
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 cup of heavy cream
  • 1 cup of chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon of fresh thyme leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon of paprika
  • 1 cup of shredded strong cheddar cheese
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Directions:

Grease a 9×13-inch baking dish and set the oven to 375°F (190°C).

Fry the bacon until it’s crispy in a large pan set over medium heat. Remove the bacon from the pan and set aside to drain on a paper towel-lined dish.

Sauté the chopped onion in the pan until it becomes tender. Sauté the garlic for one more minute, or until it begins to release its aroma.

Set aside the garlic and onion, raise the heat to medium-high, and add the chicken breasts. Add paprika, pepper, and salt to taste. Get a beautiful brown crust by searing both sides for three to four minutes.

Cut the chicken into strips after taking it out of the pan. Toss in the diced potatoes and simmer in the same pan for approximately 5 minutes, or until they begin to soften.

In the prepared baking dish, layer half of the potatoes. Arrange the asparagus spears on top, followed by the bacon and seared chicken strips.

In a bowl, combine the heavy cream, chicken stock, and thyme. Pour this mixture over the ingredients in the baking dish.

Cover and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbling and the top turns golden brown. Sprinkle with shredded cheese.

The sauce will thicken significantly if you let the dish sit for approximately 5 minutes before serving.

Variations and Tips:

  • To make this recipe vegetarian-friendly, replace the bacon and chicken with a can of washed and drained white beans or chickpeas.
  • For a change of pace, try adding oregano or rosemary.
  • Ten minutes before the baking time is up, sprinkle the top with a combination of breadcrumbs and Parmesan cheese for an extra crunch.
  • The casserole can be assembled, covered, and chilled in advance if you choose to make it ahead of time. When you’re ready to bake it, add another ten to fifteen minutes.

Perfect for home cooks of all skill levels, this Asparagus & Bacon Chicken Potato Casserole combines simplicity and complexity for a hearty, comforting dinner that will bring back fond memories. Enjoy this fusion of Midwestern sensibilities with a dash of culinary artistry.

Enjoy!

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