I love to cook, bake, and share my favorite recipes. Food brings our families together to talk, celebrate, and create memories.
Savory Crescent Chicken Squares Sure to Impress!
Savory Crescent Chicken Squares: The Perfect Main Dish for a Ladies Luncheon
When making Savory Crescent Chicken Squares for my family, I can't but help think of my 77-year-old mother who handed down the recipe to me. She would make these often in the 1970s when she was a stay-at-home mom of four and would invite her lady friends to our home for a luncheon. These Savory Crescent Chicken Squares were the perfect main dish — light, delicate, and delicious — to impress a group of women that was hard to impress. They look as if you slaved away in the kitchen, but they're really easy-peasy to make.
Let's Get Started!
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The Assembled Ingredients
The Ingredients, Please!
- 3 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 3 tablespoons margarine or butter, melted
- 2 cups chicken, cooked and cubed, or 2.5 ounce cans boned
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon pepper
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 1 tablespoon chives or onion
- 1 tablespoon pimiento, chopped
- 8 ounce can Pillsbury Refrigerated Quick Crescent Dinner Rolls
- 3/4 seasoned croutons, crushed
Mix Ingredients in One Bowl!
- Heat oven to 350 degrees.
- In medium bowl, blend cream cheese and 2 tablespoons margarine (reserve 1 tablespoon) until smooth. Add the next 6 ingredients. Mix well.
- Separate crescent dough into 4 rectangles. Firmly press perforations to seal.
- Spoon 1/2 cup meat mixture onto the center of each rectangle. Pull the corners of dough to the top center of chicken mixture, twist slightly and seal edges.
- Brush tops with the reserved tablespoon of margarine. Dip in crouton crumbs.
- Place on ungreased cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes until golden brown.
Place the Mixture on Each Rectangle
Setting the Scene with Savory Crescent Chicken Squares
The times were changing for women in the '70s with the feminist movement, the fight to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment, and the historic Supreme Court decision, Roe v. Wade, that made abortion legal. It was a decade when women were envisioning the possibilities beyond the home. Yet, not all were ready to forsake the familiar and jump blindly into the unknown. My mother and her lady friends were still clinging to their traditional roles as housewives and to a world where women still met for fancy luncheons and dined daintily on Savory Crescent Chicken Squares.
My mother took her hosting duties seriously and making Savory Crescent Chicken Squares indicated she meant business. She'd set out our fine china with its dainty roses and gold trim that we ate from only on Thanksgiving and Christmas. She'd put out our sterling silver flatware that she'd recently polished and our lacy white cloth napkins, newly pressed. She'd buy a big, bountiful bouquet of fresh flowers to arrange in a crystal vase for the centerpiece.
Elaine Stritch Sings "Here's to the Ladies Who Lunch"
The Ladies Luncheon of the '70s Would Rival Any Facebook Post
The table would look eerily perfect, ready for a photographer to snap pictures for Ladies Home Journal. Although it was our house and our stuff, it in no way mirrored our family's isolated existence. My father was an unemotional man from stoic German stock. I'm convinced he never received a lick of affection from his mother, the woman I knew as my icy-cold grandmother who never cracked a smile.
My dad was a workaholic long before the term became popular and demanded a quiet, orderly home where "little children were seen and not heard." He hated to socialize, preferring to be home alone reading history books and watching sports on television. If he were a young man today with more options, he certainly wouldn't choose to get married at 25 and start having children at two year intervals. But, having married a deeply religious woman who bought the Catholic Church's teachings against birth control hook, line, and sinker, he was preordained to have four little kids before turning 32.
My dad's resistance to socializing made my mom treasure her ladies luncheons even more.They were the ideal platform for showing off -- comparable to today's Facebook posts where the goal is to impress and make everyone yellow-eyed. My mom deemed her luncheons a success only if her friends praised her through the roof about her immaculately spotless home, her tastefully decorated living room, and her flawlessly prepared meal. I HATED my mom's luncheons because they were all a pretense, but my mom LOVED her luncheons because they were all a pretense
The Ladies Luncheons Have Gone the Way of the Dinosaurs, but Savory Crescent Chicken Squares Survive
The ladies luncheons began to die out like dinosaurs in the '70s and became extinct in the '80s. All I say is: thank goodness! As an introvert who detests small talk, I would have been a complete flop at hosting them and would have dreaded the entire ordeal.
Fortunately, Savory Crescent Chicken Squares have survived and they're enjoyed regularly by my husband and two boys. They now sit on everyday dishes (the kind that can go in the dishwasher), not fine china. They're typically served with potato chips, not cucumber salad, and smoothies, not lemon iced tea. It's a more casual lifestyle and I'm so relieved.
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© 2015 McKenna Meyers