Like I promised, here is the recipe for the broccoli crumb casserole. I think the original dish was vegan, but I didn’t make any special efforts to make sure it stayed vegan and tweaked it a little based on what I had on hand. The basic gist is: steamed broccoli + lots of fat = yummy gooey happiness. It was pretty tasty and a good accompaniment to the fried chicken I served.

The part I liked best was that the creamy cheese mixture combined with the mozzarella to form a nice crust on top of the broccoli. Then, underneath, it was melty and soft. The original recipe called for 2-½ cups broccoli florets, but I basically used what I had leftover from Thanksgiving, which turned out to be a great portion size for 2 people. However, it did not match with the amount of béchamel the recipe originally called for. I didn’t adjust for that so I’m sure the broccoli was extra cheesy.

I think we were both fine with that. 🙂

Broccoli Crumb Casserole

1 bunch broccoli (or 2-½ cups broccoli florets)
½ cup milk
½ cup heavy cream
1 bay leaf
2 tbsp. butter
2 tbsp. AP flour
½ tsp. mustard powder
½ tsp. garlic powder
A few shakes of nutmeg
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. fresh ground pepper
Buttery crackers, coarsely crushed
Shredded mozzarella cheese

1- Preheat oven to 350-degrees and lightly grease baking dish.

2- Remove stems from broccoli.

3- Blanch in hot water for 3 – 4 minutes. Drain and rinse in cold water. Layer in baking dish.

4- Gently heat milk and cream in small sauce pan with bay leaf.

5- In medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat and whisk in flour.

6- When flour is a light golden brown, discard bay leaves from milk mixture and add to flour mixture.

7- Whisk until smooth. Reduce heat to medium-low and add nutmeg, mustard, garlic powder, salt and pepper.

8- Continue to whisk, ensuring smooth, until coats the back of a smooth. Remove from burner.

9- Pour over broccoli and pour ¾ of sauce on top. Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese and cracker crumbs. Pour remaining sauce on top and sprinkle with a little more cheese.

10- Bake for 20 – 25 minutes or until top is golden brown.

Servings: 4

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