Hearty Winter Meals
Recent years have given us many new cookbooks that emphasize convenience, with a focus on one-pot meals and spending less than an hour on family dinner. On the other hand, casseroles may require some assembly, but these new cookbooks have given us fantastic updates to old-fashioned classics. It's hard to beat the all-in-one combination of vegetables, grains, and protein- especially when the flavors touch on all of our tastes. The leftovers are nice, too!
How about a recipe that uses up day-old rice and is a snap to prepare?
Green Rice Casserole
adapted from Crazy for Casseroles, by James Villas
2 1/2 cups cooked long-grain rice
1 1/2 cups shredded sharp cheddar
1 cup ricotta
1 cup sour cream
1 garlic clove, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
1 10-oz. package frozen chopped spinach
4 scallions, chopped
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 2-quart casserole or baking dish.
2. In large bowl, combine rice, cheeses, sour cream, and garlic, reserving about 1/3 cup cheddar. Mix well and season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir in spinach and scallions. Spread mixture into prepared casserole, and sprinkle over remaining cheddar.
3. Bake until golden, about 30 minutes.
Variations: Along with the spinach and scallions, add a cup or two of chopped green vegetables of your choosing. Either brown or white rice can be used. Steaming and chopping ten ounces of any other leafy green should work well, too. Just be sure to chop the greens well and allow excess moisture to drain before adding them to the rice mixture.
Some other great cookbooks from DPL collection for one-meals and casseroles:
Bake Until Bubbly, by Clifford A. Wright
Casseroles: From Gumbo to Coq au Vin, by Sonia Stevenson
Not Your Mother's Casseroles, by Faith Durand
Simply Ming One-Pot Meals, by Ming Tsai
The Best Cover & Bake Recipes, by the Editors of Cook's Illustrated
Ciao Italia Slow & Easy, by Mary Ann Esposito