Baked Vegetables: A perfect party casserole

A perfect casserole for any brunch, lunch or dinner party. It caters to both casual and sophisticated gathering, such a versatile dish it is!

What I like about this recipe in particular is its flexibility in terms of ingredients. You can throw in as many and different veggies as you want. There’s no specific rule and number to it. You can use all your favorite or the leftover in the fridge too 😉

Veggies that I prefer to use are potatoes, broccoli, mushrooms, shallots, tomatoes, asparagus (my fav!), carrots. These are just my preferred, you can use your favorite ones. Some people like to add baby corns, zucchini, capsicum, cauliflower and eggplants in casserole. You can also add peas of any kind to add body and color to whole dish.

Basic technique that goes in this dish is that all vegetables should be cooked perfectly when baking is finished. Since, some of the vegetables need more time to cook then others, we temper or pre-boil such veggies before throwing them in the dish. Once veggies are ready, pour white sauce on it, top it with lots of shredded cheese and push it in for baking to perfection.

To get the perfect white sauce recipe, click here. You can prepare it fresh or use frozen/refrigerated. I would recommend preparing it fresh but you can always make it in advance and store in fridge.

Photo by Engin Akyurt on Pexels.com

RECIPE

INGREDIENTS:

  • Your preferred vegetables cut in almost same size: 2 cup. I used the following: (total approx 2 cups)
    • Potatoes
    • Shallots
    • Asparagus
    • Baby carrots
    • Broccoli
    • Mushroom
    • Tomatoes
  • White cheese sauce: 3 cups
  • Cheddar shredded: 1/2 cup or more
  • Parmesan shaving: 1/2 cup or more
  • Basil/ coriander/ shaven Zucchini : for garnishing

METHOD:

  • Pre-heat oven to 200 degree C.
  • Dice all the veggies in same sized pieces. Keep in mind that these are going to be baked so pieces should not be too tiny or else it will be all mushy in the end. Keep it around an inch big.
  • Wash all of them and keep aside. Boil potatoes and broccoli for 5 mins and brain. If you’re using cauliflower, baby corn or peas boil them too for 5 mins before putting in the dish.
  • Line all the vegetables in a greased dish in such a was that all veggies are distributed evenly across the casserole so that when you serve a spoonful in a plate, that person gets to taste all veggies and not just potatoes or mushrooms.
  • Pour white sauce over and mix lightly so as to make sure it coats every piece evenly.
  • Finish with generous portion of shredded cheese and slide it in oven.
  • Bake for 20-25 mins. Broil for 5 mins to get a beautiful golden brown finish on top.
  • Take it out when done. Let it cool for 5 mins.
  • Garnish with basil or coriander or zucchini and serve hot!

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