Monday, April 18, 2011

"Make-Ahead Meal"--Baked Kielbasa and Cheese Pasta with Broccoli

For the last recipe in my "Make-Ahead Meal" series, I decided to re-create one my family's favorite meals using kielbasa instead of ham. This was a HUGE hit with everyone and I, personally, liked this version a lot better then with the ham. This made A LOT. We had a lot leftover (which was still good the next day) so I would say that this would easily feed 8 people.


Baked Kielbasa and Cheese Pasta with Broccoli

1- 13.25 oz pkg whole wheat rotini pasta, cooked al-dente
1 1/2 lbs turkey kielbasa, cut lengthwise and then sliced into half-moon slices
1- 12 oz pkg frozen broccoli, cooked
6 T unsalted butter
1 small onion, diced
1/3 cup flour (plus more, if needed)
3 1/2 cups 1% milk
1/2 tsp dried parsley
1/2 tsp ground mustard (or more if you want)
Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
6 oz 2% milk reduced fat shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup grated reduced fat parmesan cheese (plus more for sprinkling)

Cook pasta to package directions just to "al-dente", drain. Cook broccoli until done, whatever method is preferred by you (microwave or stove top), drain.

Melt butter in a 3 quart saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook 4-5 minutes.
Reduce heat to medium, add flour, mix well and cook for 1 minute to create roux stirring constantly. Gradually add milk to roux to form a thickened sauce (add more flour if needed to desired thickness), also add the parsley, mustard and salt/pepper, to taste, to roux (I started with a 1/4 tsp salt and 1/8 tsp pepper and then added more if I desired). Remove from heat. Add cheddar cheese and parmesan to roux and mix well until all melted.

Add pasta, kielbasa and broccoli back to pot used to boil pasta in. Add the cheese mixture and stir gently until well combined. Pour pasta mixture into a 9x13 pan, sprayed with cooking spray. Sprinkle with more parmesan cheese on top.

Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use, up to 2 days. (Or bake immediately--adjust cooking time to only 20 minutes though)

When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Remove plastic wrap and replace with nonstick foil (or foil sprayed with cooking spray to prevent sticking--a major pet peeve of mine!). Bake covered for about 40 minutes or until hot and bubbling. Enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. yummmmm! I love kielbasa, so I am def. going to try this. It looks so good.