Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Cooking for the Masses

Back before we had kids, and even for a little while after we had them I used to really go all out at the beach. I think it was a result of my MIL cooking three FULL meals a day whenever we went to their place in Duck, NC. We're not talking "homestyle cooking", either. She would scour Gourmet and Bon Appetit all year making up extravagant menus. Of course, Dr. Daddy's an only child so she had plenty of time to do this for years and years.
These days, I'm all about casseroles for the beach. I don't like really boring and unhealthy cheesy mac type stuff, though. It's got to be good!
Today I'm including one of my favorite casseroles from years past and a new one that I am absolutely in love with. These both freeze well, too. Just prep them right up until the oven part and then freeze.
The first is from Southern Living.

Cajun Shrimp Casserole

2 pounds unpeeled, large fresh shrimp
1/4 cup butter
1 small red onion, chopped*
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper*
1/2 cup chopped yellow bell pepper*
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper*
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups fresh or frozen sliced okra
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 (10 3/4-ounce) can cream of shrimp soup**
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
3 cups cooked long-grain rice
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Garnishes: quartered lemon slices, fresh flat-leaf parsley sprigs

Peel shrimp; devein, if desired.
Melt 1/4 cup butter in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and next 3 ingredients; sauté 7 minutes or until tender. Add garlic, and sauté 1 minute. Stir in okra, lemon juice, and salt; sauté 5 minutes. Add shrimp, and cook 3 minutes or until shrimp turn pink. Stir in soup and next 4 ingredients until blended. Pour into a lightly greased 11- x 7-inch baking dish. Sprinkle evenly with Parmesan cheese.

Bake at 350° for 15 to 20 minutes or until casserole is bubbly and cheese is lightly browned. Garnish, if desired.

*1 (10-ounce) package frozen onions and peppers may be substituted for fresh onion and bell peppers.

**1 (10 3/4-ounce) can cream of mushroom soup may be substituted for cream of shrimp soup.

Note: Unbaked casserole may be made one day in advance. Cover and refrigerate. Let stand at room temperature 30 minutes before baking as directed. To freeze unbaked casserole, prepare as directed, omitting Parmesan cheese. Cover tightly, and freeze. Let stand at room temperature 30 minutes before baking. Bake, covered, at 350° for 50 minutes. Uncover; sprinkle evenly with Parmesan cheese, and bake 10 more minutes or until cheese is lightly browned.

Makes 6 servings

If you want to print it out you can click on the link below:
Cajun Shrimp Casserole

The second casserole is a new one from Cooking Light. I added a few things and made a few changes and now it is delish!

Zucchini, Sausage and Feta Casserole

2 1/2 cups uncooked ziti (short tube-shaped pasta)(Barilla has the new PLUS pasta, which is really good for you)
8 ounces chicken sausage (could also use ground turkey)
Cooking spray
1 teaspoon olive oil
5 cups thinly sliced zucchini (about 1 1/2 pounds)
2 cups vertically sliced onion (about 1)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
1/2 cup (2 ounces) crumbled feta cheese
1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
1 14 oz. can diced tomatoes
1 Tablespoon dried marjoram
1 Tablespoon dried oregano

Preheat oven to 400°.
Cook pasta in boiling water 5 minutes, omitting salt and fat; drain.

Remove casings from sausage. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add sausage to pan; cook until browned, stirring to crumble. Remove from pan. Heat oil in pan. Add zucchini, onion, salt, pepper, and garlic. Cook 10 minutes or until vegetables are tender and zucchini begins to brown, stirring occasionally.

Combine broth and flour in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add broth mixture to pan; cook 1 minute. Combine zucchini mixture, pasta, sausage, and feta cheese in a large bowl; toss well. Spoon pasta mixture into an 11 x 7-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle evenly with mozzarella cheese. Bake at 400° for 20 minutes or until bubbly and lightly browned.

6 servings (serving size: 1 cup)

You can print this one out as well at the link below, but don't forget the add ons!
Zucchini, Sausage and Feta Casserole


magnolia mama said...

Yum...those look delicious.

Steph said...

Mmmmmm! Looks really good! Thanks for sharing! I'm always looking for new things to do at the lake!

Happy Homemaker said...

I love casseroles like these! Thanks for the recipes!! And the email! You might be right!