Apples and sweet turnips cooked in a creamy bechamel sauce and topped with cheesy breadcrumbs: The comfort-food way to eat your winter veggies. ~ by Serena Ball, MS,RD
So if you’re not jetting off to some tropical location, hopefully you’re hunkering down for a cozy week of chilling out with the kids. At our house, that means playing games; two new favorites just happen to be food-themed and are hilarious: Bugs in the Kitchen and Toasted or Roasted – The S’mores card game. But even if you’re not sitting in front of the fireplace, there’s a lot of reasons to be serving up casseroles all winter long. Not the least of which is they are super-convenient and healthy and exceedingly kid-friendly.
Now casseroles occasionally get a bad rap as gluey and gloppy, passé (as in originating from 60’s cookbooks)– or rather unhealthy. However, as a dietitian (who grew up on casseroles!) I say they are:
Fresh and seasonal – Yes, root veggies are in season right now. Turnips, rutabagas, potatoes and parsnips that have been grown locally can still be found in most parts of the country.
Possibly retro, but definitely hip – With chefs crafting new and fresh flavors on winter comfort food, casseroles are ultimately on the menu. And we food bloggers know casseroles are some of our most popular posts.
Totally healthy – Using a bit of butter, oil or bacon provides fat – and it’s this fat that allows the body to absorb the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K that are found in vegetables. Plus, once covered in a light cheese sauce, toasted breadcrumbs or the following easy-bechamel sauce, veggies have a greater chance of getting eaten.
So for healthy, cozy casseroles recipes, check out:
Wasabi Crab Casserole – My family’s New Year’s Eve tradition
Do you have a comfort food casserole favorite? What are you doing this week- hopefully on vacation!?