It has been awhile since we have had old fashioned, grilled, no-frills cheeseburgers at our house. I think the last time was when I was sick...about a month or so ago. Even then, I felt really crappy and I could not enjoy them at all. (How sad for me!)
The husband had requested burgers again a week or so ago, but I forgot to work them into the menu. Since I took a freezer inventory last Tuesday, I realized that we needed to use up some of the ground beef that we have stocked. Based on the beef surplus I have in my freezer, I will be breaking my self-imposed "beef once a week...vegetarian three times a week rule" again. (I have really fallen off the wagon with that lately!) I am slowly trying to cut back on red meat by only having it once a week. However, frugality is my main priority and I don't want to be wasteful. Until I can get a good balance of protein items going in my freezer, I need to set my plans aside and be a little more flexible with our menu planning. Keeping our budget in check is what I need to work on the most right now.
I thawed some of my homemade whole wheat buns to have with our cheeseburgers and I am making a new veggie side dish, too. I found this casserole recipe in Family Circle magazine recently. I have both fresh broccoli and fresh cauliflower on hand, and all the other ingredients I found lurking in my pantry. Yes, it employs the use of some processed ingredients...sigh...processed stuff makes me cringe. Again, I am trying to stay flexible and keep what is budget-friendly in mind. At least the veggies are fresh.
The burgers and buns are 'been there/done that' so I won't bore you with re-typing the recipes. However, below is the new recipe for the casserole. I will let you know how it turns out!
* 1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
* 1 head broccoli, cut into florets
* 2 eggs
* 1 large onion, peeled and coarsely chopped
* 1 can (10.75 ounces) condensed cream of mushroom soup
* 1/2 cup light mayonnaise
* 2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
* 1 box (6 ounces) chicken-flavored stuffing mix
* 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1. Heat oven to 350°F.
2. In a large pot, steam cauliflower for 7 to 8 minutes and broccoli for 5 minutes, or until fork-tender. Set aside.
3. In a food processor or blender, mix together eggs, onion, soup and mayonnaise until smooth.
4. In a 13 x 9 x 2-inch baking dish, spread cauliflower in an even layer. Sprinkle with half the cheese and top with half of the soup mixture. Repeat layering with broccoli and remaining cheese and soup mixture.
5. Prepare stuffing mix following package directions. Spoon stuffing over top of casserole. Bake at 350°F for 45 minutes. Serve warm.
The casserole was really, really good. It could actually stand alone as a vegetarian meal. It was both flavorful and filling; after tasting it, I didn't mind so much about the "processed" ingredients. What can I say, I am fickle...especially when the dish tastes good! The casserole itself kinda reminded me of the Strata I made, but with different veggies. Overall, this casserole is a total keeper...considering it is made with all ingredients that I usually have on hand anyway.
Our burgers turned out awesome, and my homemade buns held up well to freezer storage. You could not even tell that they had been frozen and then thawed. I am still ridiculously pleased with the whole wheat bun recipe. Our dinner was super-yummy and fairly simple...perfect for a Sunday night meal!