After a busy day of potty training, and other things I just threw together a dinner last night. It was one of those ecclectic, recipe-free meals where I'd “winged it” with whatever fell out of the refrigerator.


Amid the usual scramble for bibs and chairs I heard, “What are we eating tonight, Mommy?” Unsure what to call my concoction, I said simply, “Dinner.” After giving the same answer a couple more times one child said, “But Mommy, it has to have a name!”


I would have stubbornly stuck to dubbing it, “Dinner” except that four year old Kendra impressed me by remembering her grammar lesson,  “It is a noun, because it is a thing.” With a big smile she recited, “A noun is the name of a person, place, thing, or idea.”  Then she continued, “Dinner is a common noun, but Mommy, it needs a proper noun.”


Defeated, I had to name the dish on the spot. “Henry.   It’s name is Henry.”


So all through dinner we hear, “May I please have some more Henry, Mommy?” and, “Mmmm! This is GOOD Henry!”


Kaira declared Henry to be delicious and asked if I could share the recipe with all the grandparents, Miss Kristy, everyone at church and a long list of people which included just about everyone she knows. Maybe she will be content if I post it here?




Penne pasta–aprox 4 cups


2 cups diced cooked chicken (We grill it advance in huge quantities and freeze)

1 onion-finely chopped

1-2 cups chopped mushroom (I had portabellas! What a treat!)

1 can Cream of mushroom soup (or about 2 cups of homemade equivalent)

1 tsp chicken broth powder

1 celery stalk finely diced

1 4oz can green peppers, or equivelant in chopped and sauteed fresh pepper

fresh ground pepper–to taste


Swiss cheese slices



Combine ingredients (except for the pasta and the swiss cheese) in pan on stove, stir over low heat until blended and hot, then turn down the heat and let it simmer gently for 30 minutes (or more).


While it simmers, cook the pasta as you usually would. 

When pasta is al dente, drizzle with olive oil, then drain. Transfer drained, cooked pasta to a shallow casserole dish, then with the chicken mushroom sauce.


Arrange slices of swiss cheese over it all, and put it in the oven for a few minutes–just long enough to melt the cheese.

Really it turned out well, and was similar to a dish I’ve ordered in restaurants a few times. Ken liked it enough to suggest I document what I’d done so I could reproduce Henry again. I may have to come up with a more suitable name for it though…


8 thoughts on “Henry

  1. Oh, no, you *must* leave the original name–it’s destined to be a family story and recipe for sure! And let me give you a round of applause for such a delicious-sounding last-minute meal? The dinners I throw together like that rarely turn out as appetizing.


  2. My eleven year old and I laughed and laughed about eating “Henry”!
    I have days like that as well… like our “roast soup”. My hubby calls it that as it was made from leftover roast and was in a soup form. So it’s now called “roast soup”.
    Good going with the grammar! I know you’re proud.


  3. Oh my! That is so cute! What fun to eat a dish called Henry!

    When I’m asked, “What’s for dinner?” I say “Food.” That’s the only answer your going to get out of me.

    Abiding in the Vine!

  4. and now he has a name!!! I’m not very good at “throwing things together”, but my sister is. She will get a kick out of this post. I say you keep the name Henry. As the previous commenters said, it will be a family classic, with a great story. 🙂

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