People who love hotdish or casserole usually have a preference if given a choice between rice and pasta. But there others like me who relish the taste of both.
When it comes to the former, a combination of long grain and wild rice — Uncle Ben’s and Rice A Roni are two examples — is my favorite.
However, when I have a recipe that calls for that combo, I like to make my own. And there are a couple of good reasons: Homemade is cheaper, and it doesn’t contain preservative-packaged flavor that comes in anything boxed.
The following recipe yields two casseroles — one for now and one for later — that makes a strong case for rice.
Green Bean Chicken Hotdish
1 6-ounce package long grain and wild rice mix (or your own homemade substitute, 1 cup of each)
4 cups cubed cooked chicken
1¾ cups frozen French-style green beans
1 10¾-ounce can condensed cream of mushroom soup, undiluted
1 10¾-ounce can condensed cream of broccoli soup, undiluted
1 4-ounce can mushroom stems and pieces, drained
2/3 cup chopped onion
2/3 cup chopped green pepper
1 envelope onion soup mix
¾ cup shredded Colby cheese
2/3 cup French-fried onions (for each casserole)
Prepare wild rice according to package directions. Stir in the chicken, beans, soups, mushrooms, onion, green pepper and soup mix. Spoon into two greased 1½-quart baking dishes. Sprinkle with cheese.
Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes or until heated through. Uncover and sprinkle with french-fried onions; bake 5 minutes longer or until onions are golden.
Freeze option: Cover and freeze one casserole for up to 3 months. Completely thaw in the refrigerator. Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking. Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 60 to 65 minutes or until heated through. Uncover and sprinkle with french-fried onions; bake 5 minutes longer.
Yield: 2 casseroles, which each serve 4 to 6 servings each.