Recipe #34: Broccoli Rice Casserole

I have a very faint memory of eating this once though things are foggy as to where I was exactly, or even why. Part of me feels like we had it when we were kids on a trip to La Ronge while visiting the daughter of one of mom and dad’s neighbours, although another part of me tells me that I’ve only been to La Ronge twice and both times were certainly not visits to see Theresa. Unusual.

Anyway, towards the end of my meat free week I was trying to think of filling dishes to make for supper. The idea of just eating vegetables was running dry, and I was hoping that some kind of starch would leave me feeling full. I had broccoli in the fridge and got the idea that maybe rice would be filling and that’s when I got the idea to make a broccoli rice casserole. I searched for a recipe and came up with this one from Kraft, and for once I actually had almost all of the ingredients on hand!

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 2 Tbsp.  butter or margarine, divided
  • 2 cups cooked rice
  • 1 can  (10-3/4 oz.) condensed cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 pkg. (10 oz.) frozen chopped broccoli, cooked, well drained
  • 1 cup  CHEEZ WHIZ Cheese Dip
  • 1/2 cup fresh bread cubes

Preparation Instructions

Preheat oven to 350°F. Cook and stir onion in 1 Tbsp. of the butter in large skillet on medium heat until tender. Add rice, soup, broccoli and CHEEZ WHIZ; mix lightly. Spoon into 1-1/2-qt. casserole. Toss together remaining 1 Tbsp. butter, melted, and bread cubes; sprinkle over casserole. Bake 30 to 35 min. or until heated through.

It was just like I remember! I made changes of course, some of them based on the fact that I apparently can’t read very good. My first change was in the onion. I saw that it needed onion and even fried onion at that, but my casserole came out of the oven onionless. Initially I didn’t want to take the time to fry the onions because I was started, and I fully intended on at least cutting them up to include but completely forgot.

The next change was in the broccoli. I had fresh broccoli in the fridge and some frozen in the freezer, so I decided to use both to get to my required amount. I cooked both the rice and the broccoli in my vegetable steamer/rice cooker (at separate times) and it saved me a few extra dishes.

The last change came to the topping. I didn’t have any bread to cube up, but I did have crackers so I crushed those up on top. I was also lazy and decided that I didn’t really need to pour melted butter on top of that, so I left that step out. I did add salt and pepper though as the original recipe did not call for that.

Overall it was really quite good. I had actually weighed out my broccoli, but in hindsight I should have added more. It ended up being very ricey and not so much broccoli. The Cheez Whiz was a little overpowering, so I think next time I’d maybe cut back to 3/4 cup of Cheez Whiz instead of a whole cup.

Will this hit my stove again? Yes, it would be especially easy with leftover rice!

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