Thursday, May 3, 2012

Remaking An Old Favorite - Creamy Broccoli Bake

When I was in my early 20s, I found a recipe called Bisquick Creamy Broccoli Bake.  I really loved the recipe, but I guess I took it to one too many family gatherings and one of my sisters told me to lay off  it for a while.  I continued to make it now and then over the years, but as I started making more and more food from scratch, it fell out of favor with me. In addition to Bisquick, the original recipe also called for margarine and canned cream of mushroom soup -- I don't buy any of those things anymore.

For some reason last week, I remembered the recipe and how much I used to like it.  So I decided to remake it with what I think are healthier ingredients.  I was surprised at how similar in flavor it was to the original.

Annie's Healthier Creamy Broccoli Bake

Approximately 1 pound fresh broccoli florets
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 to 4 large mushrooms, chopped (I used Baby Bellas, but any mushrooms would work fine)
3 Tablespoons butter
salt to taste
1/4 cup flour (mix of 50% white/50% whole wheat)
1 cup of milk
1/2 to 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup flour (mix of 50% white/50% whole wheat)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 Tablespoons butter, slightly softened

Spray 2-quart casserole dish with pan spray.

Place broccoli florets and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a medium saucepan and add enough water to cover.  Bring to a boil and boil for 2-3 minutes or until broccoli is just beginning to get tender.  Remove from heat and drain.  Place in prepared casserole dish.

In a small pan, saute chopped mushroom pieces in 3 Tablespoons of butter until tender.  Add salt to taste.  Stir in 1/4 cup of flour and cook for about 2 minutes.  Whisk in milk and cook over medium heat until mixture thickens.  It should be similar in consistency of a thick gravy; add more milk if necessary to achieve this consistency.  Pour mushroom sauce over broccoli.

Sprinkle shredded cheese over broccoli and mushroom sauce.

In a separate bowl, combine 1/2 cup flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder and 1/4 teaspoon salt (or use 1/2 cup self-rising flour) with 2 tablespoons butter.  Use a fork to combine until mixture is crumbly.  Sprinkle mixture over broccoli, sauce and cheese in dish.

Bake, uncovered, for 30 minutes or until crumb mixture is golden brown.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.
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