California Swiss Casserole

 

At work, I feed about 400 people each day and I try to have as little repetition as possible in my vegetables during the week, so I have to get creative and come up with different, less common recipes. The inspiration for this casserole came from one of my grandmothers, who always made her broccoli casserole with Swiss cheese. This is more of a “mixed vegetable” casserole. If you don’t have the fresh vegetables on hand, you can substitute 2 bags of California Blend mixed vegetables, available frozen at most supermarkets. That’s where the name of this recipe comes from.

California blend is a common foodservice vegetable blend of broccoli, cauliflower and carrots that I’m sure you’ve had, or seen, at catered dinners, luncheons, etc. Usually, the vegetable blended bags contain “less than superior” cuts of vegetables with a lot of stalk and stem, so I try to make this with fresh vegetables whenever I have time to plan ahead.

  • 2 heads broccoli, chopped
  • 1 head cauliflower, chopped
  • 1 1# bag of baby carrots
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 can Cream of Celery soup
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 3 tbsp melted butter
  • 2/3 cup sour cream
  • 2/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 cups shredded Swiss cheese
  • 1/4 cup minced onions
  • 1/2 tsp salt and pepper
  • 1 cup French Fried Onion pieces (like you put on a green bean casserole)

Cook broccoli, cauliflower and carrots in a pot of lightly salted simmering water for 10 minutes or until tender but still colorful. Drain. Add the onions and Swiss cheese to the vegetables.

In a large bowl, combine the eggs, flour, soup, milk, melted butter, sour cream, mayonnaise, salt and pepper and mix well. Fold in the vegetables.

Spoon mixture into a lightly greased (I spray with PAM) 9″x13″ pyrex baking dish.

Bake at 350F for 30 minutes, then sprinkle with the French fried onions and bake 10 minutes more, until casserole is bubbly and onions are browned.

 

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Turkey Divan

So the holidays are over and you’ve got a big dish of leftover turkey in the frig. You’ve eaten turkey sandwiches for days, made (or froze turkey for) turkey noodle soup, which I highly recommend, and you’re still stuck with a lot of leftover turkey. Why not make turkey Divan for dinner tonight? This dish can also be made with chicken, allowing you to make it any night of the week. Just cook the chicken any way you prefer (boil, grill, bake, etc) and substitute it for the cooked turkey in the recipe.

This is an old Southern standby dish, extremely easy to prepare with a few ingredients most of us have in our pantries at all times.

  • 1 can (10oz) cream of chicken soup
  • 1/2 tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1/4 tsp dry mustard powder
  • 1 tbsp Worchestershire sauce
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 bunch of fresh broccoli florets, steamed or 1 package of frozen broccoli florets, cooked for half the time recommended on the packaging
  • 4 cups leftover turkey, cut into chunks (or 4 cups cooked chicken)
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup toasted almonds
  • 1/4 cup coarse bread crumbs (I use Panko)

Mix together the soup, curry powder, pepper, mustard, Worchestershire sauce and cream in a saucepan over low heat and cook for 5 minutes. Add the broccoli, turkey and half the cheese (1/4 cup) and remove from the heat. Stir in the mayonnaise, mix well and pour into a casserole dish. Top with bread crumbs and bake at 350F for 30 minutes.

Sprinkle remaining cheese and almonds as garnish when serving.