Squash Rice Casserole

It’s been a while since I’ve posted, but I’ve spent the last two days in the kitchen making and canning salsa.  Hard to believe then that I was still interested in cooking come dinner time.  Turns out that the call of the squash was louder than the call of the couch tonight.  This is a favorite casserole of mine and I’ve made some improvements this time around.  All but one of the squash I used tonight came from my garden so that makes it extra special.  Hope you like it!

My only complaint about this casserole since I discovered this recipe in Cooking Light years ago has been that you can’t really taste the squash.  I fixed that by keeping the amount of squash the same and cutting the rice by half.  Then I substituted 5 oz. plain yogurt for the 8 oz. sour cream to reduce calories and increase protein.  I used one egg instead of two, just because.  I used regular cheddar because I think fat-free and reduced fat cheeses are an abomination.  All the adjustments turned out to be good ones.  The flavor is just as good and you can taste the squash!

A few tips about putting this together.  I usually do the squash and onions in a skillet just like I would if they weren’t going into this casserole.  They’re yummy that way, but it takes a while and a fair amount of stirring.  It’s a lot faster to boil/steam them.  A little water in the bottom of a pot is all you need.  Just be sure to drain them well before you add them to the mixing bowl.   In fact, drain them in a colander and press down with the back of your spoon to get out excess water.  Also, stir the yogurt into the egg before you combine it with the hot rice and vegetables.  That will help you avoid ending up with scrambled eggs.  Feel free to use brown rice if you like.  I used basmati this time because it’s what I had.  And use whatever squash you like – yellow and/or zucchini.  I used both.

This is one of those dishes I always burn my tongue on because I can’t wait for it to cool before I dig in.  And it’s one of those dishes that I always eat every bite of.  It’s terrific reheated.  I’ve also added some chicken to it to make a complete meal.  This recipe is such a keeper that I actually wrote it out on a recipe card, and that’s saying something!

Good?  Good enough that I’ve been making it for many years.
Easy? Yep, but requires a few pots to get it together.
Good for company? This has potluck/church supper/comfort food written all over it.
Special shopping? Nope.

Squash Rice Casserole

Ingredients

8 C sliced squash
2 medium onions, chopped
1 C cooked rice
5 oz fat-free, plain Greek yogurt
1 egg
1/4 C panko or breadcrumbs
1 1/2 C grated cheddar
2-3 T grated parmesan
1 t salt
1 t pepper

Directions

Put squash and onions in a pot with some water in the bottom. Cover. Bring to a boil. Steam until squash and onions are soft. Drain thoroughly in a colander, pressing out excess water.
In a large bowl beat egg and stir in yogurt. Add cooked rice, panko and cheddar. Add squash and onions. Stir until well combined. Stir in salt and pepper.
Press mixture into casserole dish. Top with grated parmesan. Bake 30 minutes at 350. Brown top under a broiler if needed.

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