Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Cheesy rice casserole

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I do not like to see food go to waste. If there's a scrap of cheese, a cup of dried-out rice, a wilting vegetable, I'll find a way to turn it into dinner.

Some people call me the Queen of Leftovers.

That's how this cheesy rice casserole was born. There's nothing magical about it. It's a simple formula. Look in your refrigerator for stragglers in these categories:
  • Grain (e.g. rice, pasta, quinoa)
  • Cheese (any kind will do, or mix several kinds)
  • Vegetable (e.g. zucchini, carrots, cooked mushrooms, cooked greens)
  • Strong herbs (e.g. parsley, chives, green onions)

Mix them together. Add a little liquid - chicken or vegetable stock, leftover cream of anything soup, canned cream of mushroom soup if that sort of thing doesn't bother you. And bake. What you get is much more than the sum of its parts: a warm, cheesy, comforting casserole with enough vegetables to make you feel virtuous.

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Cheesy rice casserole
Bake leftover rice, shredded veggies, grated cheese and herbs together and you end up with a warm, cheesy casserole that's way more than the sum of its parts. Use the same formula (grain, cheese, vegetable, herbs) with whatever ingredients happen to be left over in your own refrigerator.
  • 2 cups leftover cooked rice (white or brown)
  • 2 cups raw zucchini or carrot, grated (substitute cooked mushrooms, cooked greens, etc.)
  • 1 cup grated cheese (any variety)
  • 1 cup green onions, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chicken or vegetable stock
  • salt and freshly ground pepper
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x13 casserole dish with nonstick cooking spray.In a large bowl, mix together all ingredients. Turn the mixture into the casserole dish and smooth the top. Bake about 45 minutes, until the top is golden brown. Serve immediately.
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 8 servings


Yanina said...

Un plato espectacular, para salir del apuro! Me encantó. Felicidades.

Mari Nuñez said...

Looks delicious! I am sure friends and family will Love it. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

This was delicious. I made it to the recipe but I added peas, shredded carrot, sliced fresh mushroom, half an onion diced and a handful of chives from my garden chopped up.
Thanks for the idea. I dislike disposing of leftover rice

Erika Kerekes said...

Anon, I hate wasting leftover rice too! Glad you enjoyed it. More of a method than a recipe....

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