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One-dish wonders

Comforting casserole recipes from local chefs and restaurants

Story By Bailey Gilliam 

Casseroles are the comfort food of the Midwest and South. Whenever tragedy strikes, if there’s a family gathering or cooking something complex isn’t an option, casseroles are there for you. In the spirit of our “at your service” issue, here are some casserole recipes from local chefs and restaurants that you can make for yourself or share easily with those you’d like to thank for being there.


Frankie Bones 

Twice Baked Potato Casserole

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 gallons mashed potatoes
  • 1 1/2 cups bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 6 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 3 cups sour cream
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped green onions
  • 1/4 cup bacon grease 

Directions [1] Heat oven to 350. [2] In a large bowl mix all ingredients well. Pour into a casserole dish. [3] Bake for 20 minutes.

MAKIN’ BACON: Looking for a simple and clean way to make bacon? Line a baking sheet with foil and place the bacon strips close together on the sheet. Bake at 425 degrees until the bacon is browned, flipping halfway through. Drain and cool on paper towels. Once the grease cools, simply throw away the whole sheet of foil. 


©MICHAEL HRIZUK

Palmetto Bay Sunrise Cafe 

Strata

Ingredients

  • 6 eggs
  • 1 pint heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon Lawry’s seasoned salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar
  • 1 cup cooked sausage
  • 1/2 cup green onions, chopped
  • 8 slices white bread, crust removed
  • Pan spray

Directions [1] In a large mixing bowl add eggs, cream and water. Beat well. Add salt, black pepper, mustard, cayenne pepper, paprika and Worcestershire sauce. Mix well. [2] Spray bottom of an 8×8 pan. Cut bread into 2-inch cubes. Line the pan with half of the bread cubes. Add 1/2 sausage, 1/2 green onions and 1/2 cheddar cheese. Then add another layer of bread, sausage, green onions and cheese. [3] Pour egg mixture slowly over casserole. Cover and refrigerate overnight. [4] Heat oven to 350 degrees. Bake casserole for one hour until set. Let cool for 5 minutes before cutting.

Ingredients (chili sauce)

  • 1 cup Heinz chili sauce
  • 2 tablespoons green onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, crushed and chopped

Directions Combine all ingredients and heat. Top casserole after cutting.


Vineyard 

Lowcountry BBQ Pork Casserole

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds barbecued pulled-pork shoulder meat
  • 1 pound cooked al dente penne pasta
  • 1/2 pound frozen peas
  • 8 ounces grated gruyere cheese
  • 4 ounces comte cheese
  • 1 quart heavy cream
  • 1-2 ounce bag crispy fried onions
  • 2 ounces bourbon, optional
  • 2 ounces butter
  • 1 medium-size onion, finely minced

Directions [1] Have the barbecue ready to eat and hot. If using barbecue from the refrigerator, keep it at room temperature for 1 hour and place it in an oven dish with some water, cover it with foil and bake in the oven at 300 degrees for 20 minutes or until hot. [2] In a large sauce pot at medium heat, melt the butter and add the minced onion. Simmer on low heat until soft and brown, add the bourbon and cook for 3 minutes. [3] Add the cream and bring to boil. Add the frozen peas, the pasta and while stirring constantly, add all of the cheese except for 1/2 cup. Remove from heat. [4] In a casserole dish, scoop half of the pasta mixture, add the barbecue in medium pieces and cover with the remaining pasta mixture and cheese. Place the dish in the oven on the broil setting for 5 to 7 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from the oven, add onions and serve.


Lulu Kitchen 

Lobster Casserole

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1/4 cup sherry 
  • 3/4 cup half and half
  • 1 teaspoon tarragon 
  • 1/2 pound lobster meat cut into medium-sized pieces
  • 1/4 cup mascarpone cheese 
  • 1/4 cup shredded yellow cheddar cheese
  • 2 cups Ritz crackers, crushed
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions [1] Heat oven to 400 degrees. In a large pan over medium-low heat, melt butter. Add flour, tarragon, salt and pepper. Whisk until incorporated. Whisk in the sherry. Continue whisking and slowly add the half and half. Whisk in both cheeses and remove from heat. [2] Fold in lobster meat. Place in a casserole dish and top with crackers. [3] Bake for 20 minutes. Can be used a side dish or a dip.


Cassandra’s Kitchen 

Ina Garten’s Lobster Mac and Cheese

Ingredients

  • Kosher salt 
  • Vegetable oil
  • 1 pound cavatappi or elbow macaroni
  • 1 quart milk
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, divided
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 12 ounces (4 cups) gruyere cheese, grated
  • 8 ounces (2 cups) extra-sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 pounds cooked lobster meat
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh white bread crumbs (5 slices, crusts removed)

Directions [1] Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Drizzle oil into a large pot of boiling salted water. Add the pasta and cook according to package instructions, 6-8 minutes. Drain well. [2] Meanwhile, heat the milk in a small saucepan, but don’t boil it. In a large pot, melt 6 tablespoons of butter and add the flour. Cook over low heat for 2 minutes, stirring with a whisk. Still whisking, add the hot milk and cook for a minute or two more, until thickened and smooth. Off the heat, add the gruyere, cheddar, 1 tablespoon of salt, the pepper and nutmeg. Add the cooked macaroni and lobster and stir well. Place the mixture in 6 to 8 individual gratin cups or a large casserole dish. [3] Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter, combine them with the fresh bread crumbs and sprinkle them on top. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbly
and the macaroni is browned on top. 

2009, Ina Garten, All Rights Reserved


Charlie’s Coastal Bistro 

Wild Mushroom Bread Pudding

Ingredients

  • 2 cups mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 1 1/2 cups diced carrot
  • 1 shallot, sliced
  • 2 shallots, chopped
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1 sprig thyme
  • 3 cups sliced mushrooms
  • 2 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 5 whole eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/4 pounds dry bread, cut into cubes
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Directions [1] Heat oven to 350 degrees. [2] Line a loaf pan or roasting pan with parchment paper and spray with non-stick oil. [3] To start, braise the carrots, celery, thyme, and sliced onion in a large saucepan over medium heat. Once well braised, remove from heat and toss in the sliced mushrooms. Return to heat and saute until soft, about 5 minutes. [4] In a separate pan, saute the chopped mushrooms, chopped shallots, and wine until it becomes a paste consistency. This is the duxelle. Set aside in a large mixing bowl. [5] Add eggs and milk to the duxelle. Then, toss in all the braised vegetables. Last, add the dried bread. Mix all ingredients well. Salt and pepper to taste. [6] Pour mixture into your pan and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes.