At least three times per month our family of five enjoys dinner and a movie together as a family. I make a special dinner for the kids and we usually will eat before the movie. We pretty much always eat dinner together every night but when we have our family movie night I make it extra special. Just a few small touches here and there in theme with the movie we are watching makes the children feel special. I love putting a little extra love into family night.
Smurfs 2 recently was released and our family really loved the first one and so I went to Walmart to buy the new Bluray/DVD/Ultraviolet copy. I totally remember watching Smurf cartoons when I was a kid and I love the feeling of nostalgia that I get when my own children watch something that I did as a kid.
Since I usually like to incorporate a simple touch to tie our dinner or snack in with our movie I purchased some ingredients for our family dinner while I was at Walmart. The kids love my easy cheesy chicken parmesan casserole that I make using chicken tenders. I thought it would be fun to color the parmesan cheese blue and sprinkle it over the top. I also found a few plastic Smurfs cups at Walmart, some blue plasticware (in the baby shower decor section), and some blue drinks.
My recipe for our super cheesy casserole filled with Tyson battered chicken tenders is super easy and very child friendly. You probably already have the ingredients needed on hand in your pantry and freezer but if you do not then Walmart carries everything you will need.
Ingredients needed (serves 6):
20 Tyson Batter Dipped Chicken Breast Tenders
(I chose original tenders but there are also honey tenders)
24 oz jar of your fave tomato sauce (I chose a tomato & basil)
1/3 cup water
1 tsp onion powder (optional)
1 tsp garlic powder (optional)
1 tsp ground pepper
1 cup shredded Italian cheese blend
1/4 cup mini pepperoni
1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
3-5 drops blue liquid or gel food coloring
1) Preheat oven to 375 F
2) Spray or oil (I like using olive oil) a 9"x13" pan (I used a tinfoil one for easy cleanup, no dishes on family night!)
3) Pour half (12 oz) of the tomato sauce into the greased pan in an even layer
4) Place your 20 Tyson Batter Dipped Chicken Breast Tenders on top of the sauce
5) Sprinkle the mini pepperoni evenly over the chicken tenders
6) Sprinkle 1/2 cup of the shredded cheese over the top
7) Add 1/3 cup of water into the jar of tomato sauce. Add in the garlic powder, onion powder and ground pepper, put lid on and shake
8) Pour the rest of your sauce mixed with water over the top of the casserole
9) Sprinkle the other remaining 1/2 cup of shredded cheese over the very top
10) Set pan on a baking sheet and put in the oven for 30-35 minutes
11) The casserole is finished when the top cheese is golden and bubbling
Blue colored Smurf cheese directions:
1) Put about 3-5 drops of blue liquid food coloring or gel into a bowl
2) Mix in 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
3) Stir thoroughly with a spoon until the coloring has fully coated the cheese
4) Refrigerate until the casserole is ready to serve
5) Sprinkle your blue Smurf cheese over the top of your casserole for a fun Smurf touch (my kids loved it!)