BROCCOLI RICE CASSEROLE

8 cups broccoli florets

6 tablespoons butter, divided

1 medium onion, chopped

2 tablespoons butter

1 ½ cups light cream

1 cup milk

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

2 cups shredded cheddar cheese (or jack, gouda, swiss, etc…)

½ cup parmesan cheese

2 cups cooked rice

30 Ritz crackers, crushed

½ cup panko breadcrumbs

2 tablespoons lemon juice

 

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Blanch the broccoli in boiling salted water until bright green and just barely tender when pierced with a fork, about 3 minutes.  Drain and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process.

Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a large skillet and cook onion until soft and fragrant, about 2 minutes.  Stir in the flour to form a roux and cook for 1 minute.  Add the cream, milk, salt, and pepper and cook, stirring, until a thick sauce begins to form.  Stir in the cheeses until melted.

Add the broccoli and rice and toss to coat.  Transfer this mixture to a greased 9” x 13” pan.

Melt the remaining 4 tablespoons of butter in the same skillet and add the cracker crumbs and panko.  Cook tossing until well coated and lightly browned, about 3-4 minutes.  Top the casserole with the crumbs and squeeze the lemon juice over the top.

Bake for 20-30 minutes until golden and bubbly.

Optional – add 2 cups of cooked shredded chicken or leftover cubed steak or pork for a one dish meal!

 

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