Cheesy Broccoli Rice Casserole

WAIT! I know what you are thinking – Amanda, a casserole? I can assure this is not one your mother would have whipped up, it doesn’t involve processed “cheese-like” product. We were wanting comfort food, so I created a roux, and with the help of heavy whipping cream and shredded cheese…I made my own cheesy sauce.

Cheesy Broccoli Rice Casserole – 6 servings
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 onion, chopped
1 package (16 ounces) frozen broccoli florets
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup heavy whipping cream
8 ounces Kraft Triple Cheddar Cheese finely shredded (you can use whatever blend you like, this is our preference)img_0081-2
1/3 cup reduced fat milk
1 can Condensed Cream of Chicken Soup
1 1/2 cups cooked long grain white rice

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Melt 3 tablespoons butter in a large saute pan over medium heat, add the onion and cook until tender, stirring occasionally. Stir in the broccoli, cook until lightly browned.

To make the cheese sauce melt 2 tablespoons butter in a small saucepan, whisk in the flour. Cook for about 1 minute, while continually whisking, add the cream in a steady stream. Whisk in the shredded cheese, until completely melted.

Add cheese sauce, milk, condensed soup, and rice to saute pan, combine – turn off the heat.

Pour mixture into 2-quart shallow baking dish, and bake for 30 minutes, until the top is golden brown. Let dish rest for 5 minutes, and serve.

Happy Cooking! Bon Appetit!

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Pork Chops with Roasted Pears and Shallots

It’s FALL y’all! My favorite season is upon us – and it’s finally “cool” (it’s 80 F today) enough to get in the kitchen.  I decided to kick things off right, with roasted pears, shallots, thick-cut pork chops and a pan sauce.

Also, a little update on me: Things have been hectic since my last post, we’ve decided to sell our home – so I don’t get the chance to get in my lovely kitchen and cook as often as I’d like during this process, which means less posts. I assure you once this miserable process is over…I’ll be back in the kitchen.

Pork Chops with Roasted Pears and Shallots – 2 servings
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 garlic clove, minceddscn5972
3 sprigs thyme, leaves removed
2 bone-in pork chops
3 shallots, peeled and quartered
2 Bosc or Anjou pears, quartered and cored
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 teaspoon flour
1/2 cup pear juice
1 cup low-sodium chicken stock

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

Mix oil, garlic, and chopped thyme in a roasting pan. Add pork, shallots, pears, and toss to coat in mixture. Remove pears. Place roasting pan over medium heat, and brown pork on all sides, turning, about 4 minutes, remove from heat.  Roast pork until thermometer inserted into center registers 145 degrees F, about 15 minutes. Place pork, shallots and pears on serving dish – cover with foil to rest.

Meanwhile melt butter in roasting pan, over medium heat, whisk in flour. Add broth, pear juice mixture to the roasting pan and boil until sauce thickens, scraping up browned bits, about 7 minutes.

Divide pork among 2 plates, garnish with shallots, pears and sauce.

Happy Cooking! Bon Appetit!