You may already know of my weakness for 1) small dishes, and 2) Staub cookware.
Honest, I didn't buy these dishes for myself. They were a Christmas present for Cranky. He's into it, too.
These pretty enameled cast-iron dishes hold a cup. A cup! Of food. They are sold without lids, so it is tempting to heap your food a little before it goes into the oven, and heap we did.
The best part of the day's culinary adventure was that Cranky prepared and assembled our Chicken Divan. Easy-peasy, right?
Wait! Cranky had never made a Béchamel sauce before, much less a Mornay.
Bless his heart. I gave him cursory directions, but he went slightly off course.
He added some flour to the melted butter, and kept waiting for it to thicken. (It wasn't enough flour in the first place, and flour doesn't thicken until it gets its greedy little molecules on something liquid.) Well, we got that straightened out.
Then it was time to whisk in some milk. He did fine, though he held a belief that he had to stir very fast. Sauce was blooping out all over the stove.
All on his own, he decided a grating of nutmeg would be nice, and it was very nice, indeed.
Finally, the grated Gruyère went into the sauce, and it was quite successful.
Cranky was pleased!
He took more liberties. He decided to mix the cooked broccoli and chicken pieces together in the sauce, and then slam them onto the toast planks in the bottom of the oval dishes. Easier, if less "haute."
Bake till brown and bubbly, and then you may just wilt in the solace of your meal.
Yes, that is a little brown dog in the upper right. She got close, but no see-gar.