PUBLISHER: St. Martin's Griffin, 4/2017
GENRE: Cookbooks/Main Dish
MY GRADE: A
FROM PUBLISHER: From Cinnamon Roll Casserole to John Wayne Cowboy Casserole, the 103 casserole dishes in this cookbook are simple and stress-free, but each is packed with flavor, making them your go-to family favorites to whip up any day of the week.
In 103 Family Favorite Casserole Recipes, Addie Gundry shows that a dish doesn't have to be complicated to be creative. You don't need multiple pots and pans to find flavor. And with the proper tools, tips and techniques, anyone can cook memorable meals. She teaches you how to whip up everything from Potato Chip and Chicken Casserole to Strawberry Icebox Casserole to Skinny Cheeseburger Casserole.
A casserole is something to be shared--something warm, rich, and worthy of a gathering on its own. Every recipe is paired with a beautiful finished dish photograph that will make readers jump at the idea of casserole night.
Categories: Breakfast, Appetizers and Side Dishes, Chicken, Beef and Pork, Vegetarian, Healthy, Internationally Inspired, Dessert.
THINGS I'VE MADE
BACON AND EGG HASH BROWN SCRAMBLE
NACHO CHEESE CHIP CASSEROLE
I made half of this, omitting the crushed Doritos® that were to be sprinkled on top and layered in-between. I also used crushed tomatoes in place of the salsa that was to be stirred into the beef mixture. I did that because this recipe is almost identical to another one I made that used taco mix and salsa combined and I didn't like that combo, so I used something in place of salsa. I accidentally left out the corn too.
LOADED OMELET CASSEROLE
This is the same as quiche but it has no crust. I made half. It consists of eggs, milk, onion, and I used frozen spinach that was thawed in place of fresh kale and I used ground sausage in place of ground turkey. I left out red bell pepper because I don't like it. My only complaint is that it's too salty and I should have used just half the salt. Other than that it's a good, basic recipe.
CHEESY CHICKEN ALFREDO CASSEROLE
I made half of this. I didn't marinate the raw chicken in Italian salad dressing because I knew I wouldn't like it. I did use the Italian seasonings that was called for but I didn't like it. I added 1/2 c. frozen peas too. I omitted the small amount of cream cheese and used shredded Monterey Jack cheese. I also added some onion that was cooked in butter though none was called for.
This is basically the same recipe I used to make up until a few years ago and this would have been better, more flavorful, had I added a small amount of jarred chicken base (Better Than Bouillon brand.) Overall, this was easy to make though it was a three-step process.
CLASSIC SHEPHERD'S PIE CASSEROLE
This turned out great. I made half in an 8"x8" 2 qt. square baking dish. I used 1/2 c. more mix vegetables, so I used 1.5 c. total that were precooked. I used a 4.1 oz. package of instant potato flakes and added shredded sharp cheddar cheese to them after they were mixed up. If you make the full recipe, you'll need to packs of potatoes. I added a little garlic powder to the meat mixture and it needed twice the flour to thicken it, so 2 T. instead of 1. The salt specified in the recipe was the perfect amount.
BACON AND EGG HASH BROWN SCRAMBLE
I made half of this in a deep 8", 1.5 qt. baking dish and I substituted 1/2 c. cooked ground sausage for the three pieces of cooked, crumbled bacon. This uses frozen hash browns that have been thawed, condensed cheddar cheese soup, egg, milk, and some seasonings. I added onion and garlic powder too. When it was almost finished after 50 minutes I sprinkled shredded Monterey Jack cheese on it and baked it another ten minutes.
The cheese soup is pretty mild and I think it needs some shredded cheddar cheese mixed in with it. Other than that, it's perfect and very creamy. I had a piece of this the next day and it tasted terrible, like most potato dishes do, and it wasn't creamy at all. This is like a frittata and quiche where you can add any precooked meat/poultry and precooked vegetables. This would be good with broccoli and chicken. A+ for this one.
SOUTHWEST BREAKFAST BAKE
This is really good and tastes like chili. I made half in a 10" round baking dish. It uses a lot of stuff- shredded hash browns, egg, milk, cheese, onion, ground cooked sausage (I used ground beef), canned chili with beans, chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper, ground canned tomatillos (I used fire roasted tomatoes), and mild green chiles. I used milk in place of the small amount of sour cream and didn't use bell pepper since I don't like it.
The hash brown/liquid ratio is off and it took almost double the salt. The mixture is a little too wet and clearly needed more hash browns or less liquid. I don't think it needed ground canned tomatillos at all because the added moisture wasn't needed for this amount of hash browns. When I make this again I'll omit it. I like the beans that are in the canned chili. Flavorwise this gets an A+. Mine doesn't look anything like the one in the photo.
MY THOUGHTS: Everything I've made has turned out really good, or close to it. I'm truly impressed with this book. It's in full color with a large full page photo of each prepared recipe. The recipes are simple and not fancy which suits me well. Some recipes need more flavoring, including the Chicken Divan, which is only flavored with onion and a small amount of mustard, which is why I'm not going to review it but I will try it, adding whatever I think it needs to enhance the flavor.
My two favorite things out of the book are the Bacon and Hash Brown Scramble and the Southwest Breakfast Bake. This is my first time using hash browns in a frittata mixture and I look forward to trying those two recipes again, and fiddling with them to maybe suit me more. There's another one in here called Sausage Fajita Frittata that uses shredded hash browns, breakfast sausage links, strips of red and green bell pepper, and poblano peppers. I didn't make and review it because I don't like any of those peppers and would have to leave them out but I will make this recipe omitting them and substituting chopped kielbasa for sausage links.
Most of the pasta dishes are completely made on the stove then transferred to a baking dish and put into the oven to melt cheese that's on top. That's just not necessary because you can melt cheese by putting the lid back on the pan for a few minutes to. But it does look better if the food is photographed in a baking dish.
I received this from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.