Zesty Broccoli Casserole

My grandmother makes the best broccoli casserole, and whenever we have family get-togethers, she makes it because she knows I love it so much. This broccoli casserole uses Panko, which are Japanese breadcrumbs. This was pretty simple to put together, and it smelled so good while it was baking! This was really good (although it was no Grandma’s casserole), but the important thing here: Liam loved it and asked for seconds and thirds. He’s almost 3. So- that says alot about this recipe, I think. I will quote him: “This tastes good!” I served this with some veggie meatball subs (I am trying to eat down the freezer and fridge).

rating: 8

Zesty Broccoli Casserole
(www.myrecipes.com)

Ingredients:

* 3  (10-ounce) packages frozen broccoli florets, thawed
* Cooking spray
* 1 1/2  cups  fat-free milk (I used Silk plain soy milk)
* 2 1/2  tablespoons  all-purpose flour
* 1/2  teaspoon  salt
* 1/4  teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper
* 3/4  cup  (3 ounces) shredded sharp cheddar cheese
* 1/2  cup  (4 ounces) fat-free cream cheese, softened
* 1  cup  fat-free mayonnaise
* 3/4  cup  chopped onion (about 1/2 medium)
* 1  (8-ounce) can water chestnuts, rinsed, drained, and sliced
* 3/4  cup  panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
* 2  teaspoons  butter, melted

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375°.

Arrange broccoli in an even layer in an 11 x 7-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray; set aside.

Combine milk, flour, salt, and pepper in a large saucepan over medium-high heat; bring to a boil. Cook 1 minute or until thick, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add cheddar and cream cheeses; stir until smooth. Stir in mayonnaise, onion, and water chestnuts. Spoon cheese mixture evenly over broccoli.

Place panko in a small bowl. Drizzle with butter, and toss. Sprinkle breadcrumb mixture evenly over cheese mixture. Lightly spray breadcrumb layer with cooking spray. Bake at 375° for 25 minutes or until mixture begins to bubble and breadcrumbs brown.

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