Broccoli Supreme

Since Thanksgiving is next week, I thought I would post a couple of recipes that I’ll be making.  We’re hosting, but one guest has the turkey covered, so I’ll just be making a couple of casseroles and a pie.  Easy peasy!

The one thing I always, always make are my mom’s sweet potatoes, which I posted on here before.  The second dish I’ll be making is my Nana’s Broccoli Supreme, or my version of it at least.

A few years ago I decided I wanted to make Broccoli Supreme for Thanksgiving, so I got the recipe from my aunt and went on a hunt at the grocery store.  See, Nana grew up poor on a farm in Southeast Missouri during the Depression, then perfected her cooking skills in the 50’s.  While she did use fresher ingredients once they became available, some of her old standbys reflected her background.  You should have seen Jason’s face when he asked me what I was looking for as I wandered around the dairy section at the grocery store and I told him, Kraft garlic cheese in a roll.

He gently suggested that maybe I could use a nice sharp cheddar instead.  So I went from there and classed up the recipe a bit and it’s been a big hit every time I’ve made it.

Broccoli Supreme
1 small chopped onion
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup butter
2 packages frozen broccoli (or the equivalent amount fresh broccoli)
1 can cream of mushroom soup (I used the reduced fat, lower sodium kind)
1 8 oz package mushrooms, chopped small
1/2 cup sliced almonds

Cheese Sauce:
3 C. sharp cheddar cheese, grated
2 T. butter
1/8 C. flour
1 1/2 C. 1% milk
Salt and pepper to taste

In a large pan, saute onions and garlic in 1/4 cup butter, add broccoli and cook until thawed/tender.

Meanwhile, in a saucepan, melt 2 T. butter over medium-low heat. Add flour. Cook 1 minute, stirring constantly (do not allow to brown).  Gradually whisk in milk. Simmer until mixture thickens slightly, whisking occasionally, about 3 minutes. Reduce heat to low. Add grated cheddar cheese. Whisk until cheese melts, about 2 minutes. Season sauce to taste with salt and pepper.

Add soup, cheese sauce, mushrooms and almonds to broccoli. When mixture is blended, place in 9×13 casserole in preheated oven (350) and bake 30 – 40 minutes until slightly browned.

Note: the cheese sauce also makes a pretty good cheese fondue, which I found out because I was starving and dipped a bit of baguette in the leftovers in the saucepan.

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