Cristina´s Chicken and Veggie Casserole
You know how the story goes that Italians basically invented pizza because of left over food they had? Well my casserole is pretty much the same. During my stay in Berlin I would be a very inefficient shopper. I always bought one tomato too much. That meant that my fridge always had veggies that were on the verge of going bad but not quite there.
Food waste is a big topic nowadays and while I have gotten much better at shopping for food, I still find myself with one carrot or tomato too many. Last weekend it was a quarter of a broccoli, a green pepper and a carrot. I bought a couple more veggies, some chicken breast, sour cream and some cheese, and made two casseroles that would feed us for the next couple of days. This is also an ideal dish you can do for when you have people over as you usually made rather big quantities of it. Have I gotten you curious? Read on for the recipe and keep in mind that you´re welcome to use any veggies you have at hand!
500g chicken breast
1/4 of a broccoli
1 red pepper
1 green pepper
150g of mushrooms
For the sauce:
400ml sour cream (use greek yogurt for a lighter, healthier version)
240g grated cheese (I used mozzarella but you can also use gouda or cheddar)
200g Philadephia cheese
1. Cut all of your veggies and chicken breast in small-ish cubes and season with salt and pepper.
2. Start frying the veggies in a pan. (I always use our wok when there´s many veggies to fry). Fry the potatoes and the carrots first, for about 5 minutes or until you see them getting a bit cooked. Place them in your olive oil smeared casserole when done. Season with oregano. Continue with frying the mushrooms for 2 minutes, then the chicken (until it loses its pink colour) and finally the rest of the veggies, for about 3 - 5 minutes. Add them to your casserole in the same order you fried them.
3. Now for the sauce. In a small pot, add the sour cream and Philadelphia cheese and bring close a boil. Add the grated cheese and let it melt. Now pour it over your veggies and chicken before putting everything in the oven.
4. Add your casserole to a pre-heated oven at 180 degrees and let bake for another 25 minutes. After 25 minutes, stop the oven and let the casserole rest in it for another 10 minutes before serving it with a good glass of red wine.
While I was cooking this casserole, I had two accidents, breaking a measuring cup and an antique coffee plate. I broke them as I was trying to get the casserole dish out of a way too full cupboard. It´s a bit ironic that I was trying to cook a dish that was supposed to minimise the waste in our fridge and was given to see the unnecessary abundance in our cupboards too. Keep your kitchen and your house simple, folks. Donate or sell the stuff you don´t use and be mindful of the new things you buy. Whether its plates or food. We really do have much more than we need. :)