Tag Archives: swiss cheese

Linguine Casserole…

I love a nice comforting casserole.  Know what I love even more?  A comforting casserole that comes together in about an hour…from start to finish.  This one DEFINITELY falls into both categories.  I made duck gumbo for Big Daddy the other night and it was delicious.  Yesterday, I knew it was time for a lovely low maintenance casserole.  I was on Pinterest yesterday morning and came across this little beauty and knew I had found our supper for the night.  I bought the few extra ingredients I needed to make this and was all set and ready to go.  Then I went to get my hair done (not lady of leisure here my friends…it had to happen.  I had a unibrow and my hair looked insane.  I looked like I was kin to cousin It.) and rushed to do a few more errands and then to pick up my kiddos.  Of course, some days, okay more often than not, when they get in the car it is like getting a bunch of ping pong balls in a mini van that all bounce of each other and the windows.  Well you get the point.  Everyone wants to talk at once (which is a good thing, but it overwhelms me) and they have done their best to do well in school all day and be nice so they unleash their beast upon one another (and or me) and some days, honestly, I want to turn around and bring them back to school.  So I get the hungry, tired, cranky fussy things home and feed them a snack.  And oversee homework x 4.  I was ready to be done already.  I know, I know…it is wrong to feel this way.  I had missed them all day and was so happy to see their faces and hear about their day.  But those are real feelings and I did not feel like making supper.  But the little people and their daddy wanted to eat.  Somehow this keeps happening every night around 5:30.  Ha ha!!!  So, I rose to the challenge and forged ahead with making this casserole.  Even after all of that, it was so easy to put together.  And then the smell of this casserole filled the air and it drew everyone to the kitchen in anticipation of something warm to put in their bellies.  Peace was restored.  My kids were perfectly behaved and ate this with gusto.  Then I woke up from my dream.  What?  It isn’t a magic casserole people. Yeah, not exactly, but this was one heck of a wonderful meal.  My baby boy at two plates of it, but he truly will eat almost anything  Now, the others were not interested.  But Big Daddy (who is not really a cheesy pasta person) LOVED IT!!!   This is like a souped up, extra decadent mac and cheese with some ham thrown in for good measure.  Seriously guys, it is yummy all up in your tummy.  It calls for very few ingredients, but the result is rich and delicious.

Comforting Creamy Linguine Casserole (adapted from Julie’s Eats and Treats at http://www.julieseatsandtreats.com/2011/03/linguine-casserole/)

Prep Time:  15 minutes

Cook Time:  45 minutes

Serves: 6

Stuff You Need:

8 oz. of linguine, cooked (linguine is the perfect pasta for this dish and this is half of a box/package…just a little FYI)

3 cloves of garlic, minced (that is 1 1/2 tsp. of the minced garlic in a jar)

2 cups cubed, fully cooked lean ham

1 3/4 cup shredded Swiss cheese, divided

1 can cream of mushroom soup

1 cup sour cream

1/2 cup onion, finely chopped

What to do with the Stuff:

Prepare a 9 x 13 dish by spraying it with some cooking spray. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook linguine according to package directions.  Drain and set aside.  In a bowl, mix together 1 1/2 cups of the Swiss Cheese, and all other remaining ingredients together.  Stir in cooked pasta and stir to coat.   Pour into prepared casserole dish and cover with foil.  Cook for 35 minutes.  Remove from oven, remove foil and sprinkle with remaining shredded Swiss.  Return casserole to the oven for about 10-15 minutes or until cheese is melted and the casserole is all bubbly and you just want to grab a fork and eat it straight from the dish.  It is done.

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Comforting casserole indeed.  You will LOVE it!!! 

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Me…without the unibrow and cousin It hair…thank heavens.

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Slow Cooker French Onion Soup

Ya’ll know I love soups already right?  That is a well established Cajun Mama fact at this point.  Split pea and ham soup, vegetable beef soup…I LOVE SOUP!!!  Know what I love more?  Soup that cooks in the crock pot.  And french onion soup is probably my favorite of them all.  Outback Steakhouse had the best I had ever eaten, but it seems like last time I went they didn’t have it anymore.  Then darkness fell all around me.  Mostly I am kidding, but I do love me some french onion soup.  I have never attempted to make it before…until last night.  I came across a recipe on pinterest for a version made in the slow cooker and I just could not pass it up.  I am very glad I didn’t because it is simply AWESOME my friends!!!  So I will end the chit chat and just give up the goods.  AKA the recipe.  I know that is all ya’ll want anyway.  Right?

First, a few things about this recipe.  I halved it.  It made plenty for me and Big Daddy.  There is enough for at least 4 or 5 nice sized servings with the recipe cut in half.  Also, I need some individual crocks or oven safe soup bowls for the next time I make this.  I made do with what I had, but to get that beautiful brown baked in color on the top of the cheese you need to stick this in the oven before you serve it.  Just a suggestion.  So I will give you the recipe cut in half and you can double it if necessary.  Also I used my 4.5 quart crock pot for this.

Slow Cooker French Onion Soup (Adapted from http://www.getcrocked.com)

Ingredient List

3 sweet yellow onions or Vidalia onions if you can find them, thinly sliced

1/4 cup of red wine (I used what I had which was some sweet red and it was perfect)

1/2 stick of butter (or 1/4 cup)

1 Tablespoon flour

1/2 tsp. sugar

1/2 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

1 clove garlic, minced

1 bay leaf

2 cans of beef broth

kosher salt and black pepper

1 cup of water

1 French baguette

4 slices Swiss cheese

Directions

Now…melt your butter in your slow cooker.  Just put your stick of butter in the slow cooker and turn it on high, put on the lid and let the butter melt.  This took about 20 minutes for me…I suppose you could just melt the butter in a microwave safe bowl and then pour it into the slow cooker.  Duh.  Lol!  I just thought about that.  Anyway, once the butter is melted,   whisk in the sugar and then stir in your thinly sliced onions and stir to coat the onion slices with the melted butter.  Now cover the slow cooker and let the onions cook for about 2-3 hours on low.  They are basically going to caramelize in the slow cooker and will be a beautiful golden brown when you are done.  Next, stir in the flour into the onion juices.  Then stir in the red wine, beef broth, water, Worcestershire, garlic, bay leaf, and salt and pepper.  Give it a stir and return lid.  Let this cook on HIGH for about an hour and then switch it to low for another hour.  Now, I just left it on low for about 2 more hours and it was all good.

Cut 4 1 inch thick  slices of bread from the baguette.*  Toast the bread on a baking stone or baking sheet at 325 degrees for about 10 minutes or until the bread slices are a nice toasted brown.

Ladle soup into 4 oven safe bowls.  Place a piece of toasted bread on top of the soup.  Next lay a slice of cheese on top of the bread.  Bake in 425 degree oven for 10 minutes or just until cheese is melted and bubbly.   You can put all of the soup bowls on a baking sheet and transfer them to and from the oven that way if that makes it easier.  Definitely keep an eye on them, you will know when they are ready.

I cut 8 slices because my baguette was really thin.  I couldn’t find anything thicker.  I used 2 slices of bread per soup bowl.

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French onion perfection…