Help me create a delish Main Dish rice casserole
Please help!! I have a hankerin for a rice casserole. No cream of mushroom in the house, but I can make a white sauce. I also have pork chops thawing, also, I have carrots, onions, zucchini and garlic. Any suggestions are welcome! Thanks hounds!
Considering the ingredients, I would cut the pork chops into 1 inch pieces or so and marinate them in soy sauce and a little brown sugar. Maybe add some garlic and ginger (optional). Brown them in a medium high skillet and remove to a bowl. Turn the heat down to medium and add the chopped veggies (except for the garlic). Sweat the veggies until the onions are translucent (about 5-6 minutes). Add the minced or pressed garlic to the skillet for 30 seconds and stir. Add a tablespoon of tomato paste and stir until incorporated. Deglaze with a little beef or chicken stock or maybe some wine. Add the pork back to the pan. Season to taste. Add this mixture evenly to the bottom of a pyrex dish. Add a layer of your rice.
You have some choices to make with your rice. If you are going to use plain rice, you can coat the rice with bechamel and cheese or diluted tomato soup or what have you?
The other choice would be to make the rice with some concoction instead of pure water. I have used 40% tomato juice, 40% beef stock and 20% water and cooked the rice. You can then just coat the meat with flavored rice. It still wouldn't prevent you from throwing cheese on top or even bread crumbs. Throw the whole thing in the oven to warm thoroughly.
The neat thing about a casserole is you could do almost anything.
Saute the pork and cut in into strips. Combine it with the rice, some shredded Monterey Jack cheese (you can add that to your white sauce) and a can of copped mild green chilies. Sprinkle some of the shredded cheese on top and put in the oven just long enough to melt the cheese. Alternatively pop it under the broiler long enough to melt and brown the cheese.
Chop the carrots, onions and zucchini. Use the garlic to flavor some olive oil and dump the chopped veggies into the hot oil with a bit of thyme over medium low heat.