Sunday, October 7, 2012

Crispy Topped Vegetable Bake

Recipe #94:

Oh, hello there again! Yes, I've fallen off the blogging (and cooking) wagon recently, but now I am back.

For those of us in Canada, it's Thanksgiving weekend as I write. As always, I am thankful for many things in my life, but, in particular, I am thankful for the bonds of family and friendship that exist across the miles that separate me from most of mine. This is the 3rd Thanksgiving in a row that I have missed with my family, and I miss them very much.

As with most holidays, The Meatatarian and I don't really do much to celebrate them unless we have guests or are guests elsewhere at the time. I bought some turkey pepperettes yesterday as my nod to the occasion, but we're mostly just eating random food. I did have some broccoli and cauliflower hulking in the fridge this week so I decided to try this recipe to use it up.

In addition to the 4 cups of each called for, I added about 1 1/2 cups of baby red potatoes. I cut them small so that they were approximately the same size as the cut broccoli and cauliflower. We did not have skim milk on hand so I used 1%, and I used regular mozzarella cheese since I find the light  or fat-free versions rather disgusting. I went with the microwave instructions for the sauce (bottom of Kraft page), but found that it was not nearly thickened enough after 4 minutes. I think I nuked it for about 8 minutes in total - 1 or 2 minutes, stir, repeat until satisfied. Somehow, I ended up with sauce all over my sweatshirt, oven mitt, forearm and even in my nose. Don't ask.

I found the end product to be rather tasty although some of my potato pieces are slightly undercooked. Next time, I'll boil them for an extra few minutes before adding the cauliflower and broccoli. The stuffing on my version is a bit like hard clumps of crust in a few places - you might want to take the time (I lack the patience) to spread it more carefully before it goes in the oven. Regardless, we'll both eat this recipe so it's a way to get more vegetables into our bellies. That's what I consider to be success.

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