Tag Archives: Casserole

Cheesy Casserole Love

In my pantry today:

  • 3 c broccoli florets
  • 1 c mezze penne (dry)
  • 3/4 c white beans (cooked)
  • 1 whole head roasted garlic
  • 1/3 c colby jack cheese, shredded
  • 1/2 c mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1 10.5 oz can cream of [celery] soup
  • 1 tbsp reserved bacon grease [butter for vegetarian option]
  • 1/3 c plain soy milk
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • salt/pepper
  • dash asafoetida
  • 1/4 c Panko bread crumbs

casseroleWhen my better half walked out the door for work this morning, I promised to have some manner of cheesy casserole in the oven to greet her upon return. On the heels of that promise, I released broccoli from its crisper drawer prison. Then, well… I just kinda winged it.

Nope, not quite clear enough...

Nope, not clear enough…

Mince onions and let cook in bacon grease on ML until onions become translucent. Salt and pepper them for the heck of it (oh, and add in the asafoetida now). While that’s going on, boil pasta until al dente (so that it won’t get too mushy cooking in the ‘role). When done, drain and rinse under cold water; set aside.

In hindsight, I probably should have used a bigger pan. Please learn from my mistake.

In hindsight, I probably should have used a bigger pan. Please learn from my mistake.

When the onions have reached desired glassiness, dump your florets in that pan and mix until everything’s hog-tied in pig drippings [again, butter can be used here for a vegetarian option… I just happened to have some bacon, and, well, you know what happened]. Crank the heat up to M and let them cook, tossing occasionally, until the pan in its entirety blushes a bright green.

And while that’s going on, mix together those mashed up cloves of garlic, “cream of” soup, soy milk and cheeses. Grease the bottom of a casserole dish, then mix all once-individual tasks together — pasta, broccoli/onions, beans, cheese sauce. Bake covered in a 350° oven for about 25-30m, then remove from oven and dust with panko. Let it sit for five minutes, then dig on in to your night’s official flavor destination. 5 spoons!

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Cabbage, Corn and [K]ale Cream Cheese Casserole (or, “An Alliterative Affair”)

In my pantry today:

  • 2 c chopped red cabbage
  • 1/2 c chopped kale
  • 1/2 c corn kernels
  • 1/2 small sweet onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 14 oz can cream of mushroom soup
  • 6 oz cream cheese, in chunks
  • 1/2 c panko bread crumbs
  • 1/3 c fried onions
  • 1 tsp ghee
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • dash asafoetida

P1100650Ok, so you’re going to need to do a couple of things first: blanch the kale for 5-9m (taste test it for chewability-without-suspicion) then add cabbage to the boiling water. Taste test for texture; I went about 3m. Drain everything well then line the bottom of a 8×6″ glass baking dish with the strainer contents and corn.

P1100610Now that everything is done boiling, you can use the same pot to start garlic and onions in the oil/ghee. After cooking on ML for 5-10m, add the chunks of cream cheese and smoosh them all around until melted. Sprinkle on seasonings and mix in with the can of cream of mushroom soup. Pour mixture over vegetables, spreading until even. Once you’ve adorned it further with panko and french fried onions let it bake at 350° for 40m. This would have been great served over rice or alongside other dishes at a dinner table, but we ate it almost directly out of the pan. 4 spoons for not entirely knowing its consistency (5 in my heart).

 

Cabberole the Dice (or, “Say What You Will About Redheads…”)

In my pantry today:

  • 1 small head red cabbage
  • 1/2 c chopped asparagus tips
  • 1 can petite diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 stalk celery
  • 1 medium orange sweet pepper
  • 4 eggs, mixed in small bowl
  • 1/3 c mozzerella, shredded
  • 1 tsp butter
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp garlic-ginger paste
  • 2 tsp garlic paste
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 3/4 tsp red hot chili powder
  • dash asafoetida 

Cabberole.

I have made a huge mess in this kitchen. Wait, don’t run away — I promise this need not happen to you! It is nearly assured that proper prep will negate it. This wasn’t difficult, really — just a matter of finding synchronicity between the ingredients.

P1100214Chop and set to steaming the cabbage. Let steam until dark purple and still hosting its shape (8-15m depending on how crunchy you like to keep things). While steaming, start onions on ML in oil and melted butter then move to chopping/shredding anything else that needs it. Drain tomatoes and stir in both pastes; set aside. When onions begin to turn translucent add in the other vegetables and season. Add the tomatoes to that; stir.

Layer the bottom of an 8×8 glass pan with half of your cabbage. Top that with half of the tomato/vegetable mixture. Repeat one more time, then pour over that the eggs and top with cheese. Bake in 35o° oven for approximately 40m.

P1100216For serious, you guys. This was mostly an experiment and it ended up being 5 spoons of pretty durn delicious and fulfillingly filling. Vegetarians might already be drooling (I hope) but if you’re trying out some meatless Mondays I’d recommend this. Take it from one redhead who just mastered another.

Vegetarian “Not Pie”

In my pantry today:

  • 1 can crescent rolls
  • 1/2 can red beans, drained
  • 2 c broccoli florets
  • 1 medium carrot
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2/3 c sharp cheddar cheese, 1/2″ cubes
  • 1.5 c unsweeteend almond milk
  • 1 tsp vegetable ghee
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp corn starch
  • 1/2 tsp coriander
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • pinch asafoetida

notpie2It’s not a pot pie. In fact, it’s not even really a pie as the crow flies; having simply the spirit of a pie does not really qualify. Let’s just go with “Not Pie.” It’s not really macaroni and cheese either, since there’s no macaroni. But the spirit is strong in this one!

Sliver your garlic and cut your onion into tiny rectangles and saute them on ML until translucent; remove from the pan and set aside — but erstwhile you’ll have plenty of time to cut the veggies and mix a sauce. Give a quick stir fry to notpie1the small dices of carrot and broccoli florets until the broccoli goes from a waning HULK green to a more vibrant “HULK SMASH!” hue. Toss the broccoli, carrots, garlic and onions together in a baking dish. Cover them with the sauce you made by mixing cornstarch, egg and all above mentioned seasonings in with the almond milk; pour over dish and let bake for an hour at 350. Remove dish from oven, roll out from their can some crescent rolls and lay on top of the buffet below. Bake according to can-structions until golden browning appears. Remove from oven and let cool for a minute or two before digging in to see how this hot mess-erole turned out. Turns out, it was entrancingly delicious… but texturally deficient. I give it 4 spoons for flavor, but 3 spoons for consistency. Next time, I might be adventurous enough to try a bottom crust or perhaps a roux instead of cornstarch. We’ll see, because there will be a next time on this.

Lasagna, ft. Sausage, Kale and Cheese Trifecta

In my pantry today:

  • The butt-ends of two boxes of lasagna noodles
  • 1 freezer bag crock pot marinara (approx 3 c)
  • 1 freezer bag cooked ground Italian sausage (approx 3/4 c)
  • 3 medium leaves kale
  • 1 c ricotta cheese
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 c asiago cheese, shredded
  • 1/2 c mozzarella
  • 2 tbsp Parmesan cheese
  • 1 dash salt

lasagnaThaw then marry your marinara and sausage in a medium-sized pot on the stove. Also start a large, oiled pot of water with an accompanying dash of salt. When your water begins to show signs of a boil, hold each leaf of kale by its stem and dip into the water for a count of 12. Wrap them in a clean towel and gently squeeze out all the water. Move them to the cutting board, remove stems and mince; set aside. Your pasta can go in now and cook until it’s a little too al dente to be al dente, then drain it and rinse with cold water until everything is chilled to room temperature.

Shred asiago cheese, set aside with mozzarella. Mix egg with ricotta cheese and dash salt. Rub a little olive oil inside a 6×6″ baking pan and begin layering by laying the most whole of your noodles along the bottom of the pan. Pour on 1/4 your sauce, scatter in half your kale bits, sprinkle 1/3 the asiago on, drop in dollops of ricotta and spread gently across the breadth of the pan, then add as complete a layer as you can with the noodle amputations and do this all again. Add a final layer of noodles, then add the rest of your sauce and top with the rest of your asiago and all of your mozzarella and Parmesan. Bake foil-covered pan in 350° oven for 45m, then take foil off and cook another 10-20m until optimum browning has occurred. Though next time I’d use more kale and sausage, this was still pretty good and worth all 4 spoons!

 

Broccoli Casserole-ish (or, “Well, There’s Only Everything Good in It”)

  • 3 c broccoli florets
  • 1/3 c yellow onion, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 10 oz  can cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 egg
  • 2 oz cream cheese
  • 1.5 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 c sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 c panko bread crumbs
  • dash of salt

I’m going to have to tell you all something.

I’m not proud, and hope to use this public forum to ensure I bear the full responsibility for having held such a simple secret for so long.

…I’ve never made a broccoli casserole.

There. You got it out of me. Proud?

broccasseroleishAnyway, please suffer through this, my first time, as an experiment in both flavor and safety. Mince the garlic and onion and saute on ML in butter until onions become translucent. While that’s going on, cut florets to a medium-small proportion, set aside. Beat the egg into the can of cream of mushroom soup. Melt the cream cheese into the butter/onions/garlic, remove from heat and fold everything together. In large bowl, combine the contents of that pan and the egg-soup mixture. Shake in a smidge of salt and mix well. Toss your florets with this goop, put in a baking pan then top with cheddar cheese and panko. Bake in a 350° oven for 20-30m. What comes out will work well either as a stand-alone side or as a slightly saucy accessory to penne pasta; I didn’t know exactly what to expect, and I will strive in the future to perfect this concoction’s consistency. As it stands, though, this was really, really tasty and earns 4 spoons.

The Burritotal Package

In my pantry today:

  • 4 large flour tortillas
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1/2 large zucchini
  • 4 cloves roasted garlic
  • 1″ of a leek, minced
  • 1/4 c cream cheese
  • 2 c shredded cheddar
  • 1/3 c unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 4 0z can tomato sauce
  • 1 4 oz can chipotle salsa
  • 1/2 tsp Fiesta chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 diced tomato (garnish)
  • 1/4 c minced cilantro (garnish)
  • 1/2 c sour cream (garnish)

This spent an extra day not getting written, but only because I’ve got other stuff to do and not because it’s been, like, sitting out on the counter waiting. I don’t have a whole lotta time for soliloquy now either, though, so this is gonna be a quick and dirty recipe rundown:

– Slice leeks and mince roasted garlic. Warm on ML in olive oil for 10m. Increase heat to M. When at full M,

– Add small slices of zucchini and stir fry for 2m. Then,

– Stir in beans. Reduce heat to L and cover.

– Prep garnishes; set aside.

– Mix chipolte salsa and can of tomato sauce together. Heat.

– Make a thick cheese sauce on ML with: cream cheese, cheddar and milk.

– Drizzle some of the salsa/tomato sauce mixture into the bottom of a glass baking dish.

– Smear the inside of a tortilla with cheese. Put in some beanzchini. Fold, place in baking dish.

– Repeat three more times.

– Cover burritos with remainder of cheese sauce and drizzle more red sauce on. Put in a 350° oven for 10m. Serve hot with tomato, cilantro and sour cream to garnish

5 spoons!

Mexicasseroleftovers!

In my pantry today:

  • 1/2 c leftover chili
  • 1/2 c leftover take-home vegetable fajita mix
  • 1 packet Trader Joe’s Multigrain Pilaf
  • 1/2 c shredded cheese (“fiesta blend”)

This will be easier done than said. Put leftover veggies in chili pot, stir everything together. Open TJ packet and put in the bottom of a casserole dish. Top it with the chili/veggie mix then top that with cheese. Bake in a 350° oven for 15m, or until warmed through. The Trader Joe’s Multigrain Pilaf is a wonderful source of nutrition — it has been, for me, a full meal in itself before. There was so little leftover of the Mixed Race Chili and those vegetable fajitas from day before yesterday that all of it with the cheese is simply flavorful window dressing. This meal was so speedy and easy that I also had time to boil some bout-to-go blueberries into a marinade stock and bake some cookies with leftover home-made caramel peanut butter. Oh, and time to un/reload the dishwasher and make a pot of hot tea and one of rice for tomorrow. Score!