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Communion Casserole


Last Sunday, I had a big adventure in recipe revamping. I ended up cross-referencing at least 5 different recipes to create my own special chicken alfredo casserole. Haven't had that many browser tabs open since finals week of school! Anyhow, I ended up naming it Communion Casserole because a.) I was making it on Sunday and b.) the bread cubes for my homemade croutons remind me of communion. It also made for a catchy and alliterative title, and we all know how much I love alliteration. ;)

Ingredients

Casserole

  • 4 to 5 C. egg noodles, cooked al dente

  • 2 small cans chicken, undrained

  • 4 carrots, julienne

  • 1 bag frozen broccoli pieces

  • 2 C. shredded mozzarella


Sauce

  • 1/4 C. butter

  • 2 cloves garlic

  • 3 Tbsp. flour

  • 2 C. milk

  • 1/2 C. shredded romano

  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Sauté the garlic in the butter for a minute or so, until the butter is bubbling violently. Stir in the flour and cook for another minute. Gradually add the milk, about 1/2 C. at a time. Season with salt and pepper. Continue stirring until the sauce begins to thicken slightly. Lastly, mix in the cheese until it has melted and fully incorporated into the sauce (this only takes a few seconds and a couple stirs.)


Croutons

  • Half a loaf of french bread, cubed

  • 4 Tbsp. butter, melted

  • A dash each of oregano, basil, garlic powder, onion powder and salt

Spread bread cubes evenly across a cookie sheet. Melt butter in a mug in the microwave, and whisk in the seasonings. Drizzle the herbed butter over the bread cubes. Bake at 375°F for about 10 minutes, until crispy and slightly golden. You'll want to watch these close, as they can burn fast!


Assembly

Now.. after all that prep work we can put everything together! (To save time, you could certainly buy croutons or canned alfredo sauce from the store. You know me, I'm just a nutcase about from-scratch everything.)


In a greased baking dish, layer the noodles, chicken, vegetables, and mozzarella. Pour the sauce evenly over the top. Give the dish a wiggle to make sure that the sauce reaches the bottom. Top with croutons and bake at 350°F, covered with foil, for 30 minutes. Take the foil off for the last 10 or so minutes to achieve a little more browning on the top.

This Sunday is supposed to be rainy and cooler, so can you imagine how glorious a giant golden casserole would be for supper that evening? And all those marvelous "Olive Garden" aromas wafting about the house! Shucks, I may very well have to make this again. :) Oh, and a friendly reminder... Sunday is World Baking Day!


Thank you for stopping by,

Eva

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