Boil your spaghetti according to package directions, probably a little al dente to account for cooking time.
Chop onion and celery
Drain the spaghetti
I like water chestnuts and mushrooms but I omitted the mushrooms today as some are not fond of them. Roughly chop the water chestnuts just to break them up a bit.
Add the pimento. Pimento I never used to like because it was a pepper, but I've since learned to like peppers. It is great color too.
Okay, here it gets a little creepy doesn't it. Usually my mother would buy canned chunk chicken and sometimes would stew here own, but I'm a lazy cook. I could have purchased roasted chickens at the store but I didn't have the room in the fridge or the inclination to debone them on Thursday night when I bought for the party. So, as I was in the canned tuna and chicken aisle I spied the whole canned chickens. Well, curiosity got the best of me...kind of reminds me of the Alien movie doesn't it...chills...
I still had to debone these suckers and let me tell you after the first can, I learned. When I dipped my hand into that first can the whole chicken just fell into pieces, which meant lots of bones to find.
This first mass looks smushed because I was hunting for bones to make sure not a one found its way into my casserole...
Now, that is much better. I learned to slowly pull the leg/thighs out very easily and then it went quick and boneless! Smelled delicious too.
The Cream of Mushroom soup is prepared according to can directions, EXCEPT that I use milk. It is much creamer. I have used Cream of chicken, asparagus, celery, just any kind will do but my fav is the Cream of Mushroom. I also found a couple of cans of the Cream of Roasted Garlic Mushroom which I used...yummy!
Pour the soup into the mixture.
Now the Velveeta. I know it's kind of not really cheese but it is great in this recipe. In my Mother's day there was only one kind but now there are a myriad of flavors so I used some Mexican and Pepper Jack for a kick along with the original. You cube it up for ease of melting while baking. I believe the original recipe called for canned or stewed tomatoes but my mother never used them, instead opting for the pimento. My sister used Rotel tomatoes sometimes. See this is a very adaptable recipe.
I then poured it over the spaghetti and mixed. You can do it in a very large bowl, which I didn't find until this morning while putting stuff away...thump head!
Now comes the cleanup. It would have been a much quicker process if I had found the bowl and used already deboned, cooked, canned chicken but it was fun. I almost forgot...bake @ 350 degrees for 30 to 45 minutes depending on the size of casserole pan. You just want it bubbly, melted and the veggies done. Delicious with a green salad and garlic bread.
Yes it was overkill for only 21 people but I don't care. I love to cook for people and I'll take some home, some to neighbors and they will all enjoy. You can also freeze them for a later meal. We only dove into one of them so one may make the freezer.