Basic Mix and Match Casserole


We always said that my mom could make soup out of anything and its true.  My mom makes the best soup in the world.  Everyone always says I could make a meal out of anything, and that is also true.  I am the Queen of Casseroles and best user-upper of leftovers you could ever want to meet.  I guarantee that this recipe I am showing you here today will make you the Queen of Casseroles too, and that nothing edible in your kitchen will ever go to waste again!  



With this basic Mix and Match Casserole recipe you will never find yourself at a loss as to what to do with your leftover veg, or meat . . .  not even your leftover starches will be safe.  You will be able to find a use for all of it, guaranteed!


And not only that, but your family will be gobbling up your leftovers pronto because these casseroles are just so delicious.    Each casserole is simply a basic combination of protein, vegetable, carbohydrate,  sauce, and toppings.


Which can be used in any number of combinations!  For instance today, I used some leftover baked ham, leftover cooked potato,  swede (rutabaga) and green beans, a bit of chopped celery, onion and frozen sliced mushrooms, half a tin of creamed corn, along with some cracker crumbs and grated cheese on top.  Easy peasy and Todd said that it was the most delicious thing he had ever eaten.

 And all it was, was  . . . .  leftovers.  bits and bobs of this and that.  Not enough of any one thing to do anything major with, but just enough of everything that put all together we had something pretty delicious.  In fact I was wishing I had had some leftover turkey to throw in there as well because that would have been pretty tasty.


The combinations are endless.  You don't need to use cream soups if you don't want to, you can make a simple white sauce using 1 TBS flour, 1 TBS butter and 1 cup of warm milk (for one cup of sauce)  Simply melt the butter, whisk in the flour, cook for a minute and then whisk in the milk, along with some seasoning,  and cook until thick.  To make a cheese sauce just whisk in some grated cheese and a bit of tabasco.  Another easy cream sauce can be made by whisking together 2 eggs (beaten) and 1 cup of milk.  No need to cook.  Just whisk it all together with some seasoning, and mix into the casserole.  It will cook in the oven and make a delicious sauce.


Even mayonnaise works, or leftover gravy (so much the better!) or even half mayonnaise and half sour cream.   All work beautifully.  You can be your own magician and work the magic with whatever you have that is available for you to use.   Like I said, the combinations are endless.  Enjoy!


 
*Basic Mix and Match Casserole*
Serves 2
 
 
What is a casserole, but an opportunity to use up all your bits and bobs.   The quantities are for two, but can easily be doubled or tripled, depending on what you have to hand. 
 

For the protein:
(You may choose one or a combination of several to gie
you the amount of 1 cup)
chopped hard boiled egg
cooked dry peas, beans or lentils
cooked shelled prawns or shrimp
flaked cooked fish
cooke beef or pork, shredded or cubed
cooked ground beef or turkey
diced cooked ham
diced cooked chicken or turkey 
 

For the vegetable:
(You may choose 1 or more to equal 1 cup of cooked vegetables)
green beans, trimmed and cut into 1 inch pieces
peas
courgettes, sliced or chopped
broccoli florets
sauteed, chopped, or sliced onions and or sliced mushrooms 
 

For the Starch:
(You may choose 1 or more to equal 1 1/2 cups cooked)
pasta shapes such as penne or macaroni (I like whole wheat), cooked and drained
wide or narrow strands of noodles or spaghetti, broken
and cooked, then drained
cooked potato, swede or sweet potato, diced
long or short grain brown or white rice, or a wild rice blend, cooked 
 

For the Sauce:
(Select one to measure approximately 1 cup)
basic white sauce
basic cheese sauce
condensed soup (cream of mushroom, celery or chicken)
sour cream or mayonnaise
tinned creamed corn
whole or diced tomatoes in juice, undrained 
 

For the flavour ingredients:
(Select one or more to equal about 1/4 cup)
chopped onion
chopped celery
sliced black olives 
 

For the herbs:
(Select 1/2 tsp dried or up to 1 1/2 TBS fresh)
mixed dried or chopped fresh herbs such as basil, thyme, majoram, rosemary, parsley, summer savoury 
 

For the topping:
(Select1 or more to equal 1/3 cup)
grated cheese (Cheddar, Swiss,  Jack, Parmesan)
buttered bread crumbs
cracker crumbs 




Preheat the oven to 180*C/350*F/ gas mark 4.  Lightly butter a casserole large enough to hold your ingredients. Mine holds about 4 cups.


Select and prepare the ingredients of your choice.  Place the protein, starch, and veg in a large bowl and mix together.  Mix together the sauce, flavour ingredients and herbs which you are using in another measure.  Fold this into the protein mixture and then spread the mixture into the prepared casserole.  Sprinkle with the topping. 


Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes, covered.  Uncover and bake for a further 15 minutes, or until bubbling and heated through. 


This is very easy to multiply up.  


Note:  Today I used diced ham,  green beans, mushrooms, swede, potato, onions, celery, creamed corn, thyme and parsley.  I topped with cheddar and cracker crumbs.  It was delicious!




I hope you are getting really excited now at that refrigerator full of leftovers and that the wheels are turning.  What will you make?   I would love to hear the combinations you come up with!  Shoot me a comment below and share with us what you have done.   Bon Appetit!

Comments

  1. Replies
    1. My mom has always told me that I could make the sole of a boot taste good Monique! xo

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