Dinner turned out to be a surprising success last night. I say “surprising” because people who know me will tell you that my cooking often leaves something to be desired. It’s no secret that my husband is the real cook in our house, but now that I stay home with our son dinner is my responsibility. It’s not that I’m a horrible cook, I rarely burn or destroy a meal, it just that my recipe knowledge is limited and sometimes I try and get “creative”, and getting creative is often where I go wrong. This cooking creativity is a trait I inherited from my mother. (I can remember one summer she made meatloaf surprise. The surprise being the cheetoes she used as the binder/filler because there were no crackers, oats or bread crumbs in the summer house). Usually my creativity comes out of having limited pantry items or too many missing items that a recipe calls for.
Last night’s issue was I and the baby spent most of the day napping and I never pulled out any meat to thaw for dinner and the next thing I knew hubby was home from work. I decided on making pasta noodles because that is one thing we always have stocked in the pantry. But like I said, I forgot to take out any meats so I decided I’d do a white sauce and add veggies. But then I realised I had no white sauce. Well, as it would happen before the baby arrived in January I had picked up some Campbell’s soup cans because I knew they could be used in Crockpot meals and casseroles which means they can be used as sauce. So I pulled out the broccoli and cheese can because I knew I had broccoli and broccoli is great with noodles. The soup can had a really awesome sounding recipe for chicken broccoli divan which got me thinking maybe I could make that without chicken and then add rotini noodles. So that’s what I did. I followed the instructions minus chicken and added rotini and also some ham lunch meat I sliced up.
To make, just follow this recipe I found on the back of the can.
I replaced the chicken with one package of Barilla gluten-free rotini pasta noodles. And the broccoli I used was one Kroger steamer bag. I sliced up some Oscar Meyer ham as well (just eyeball it). I cooked the noodles just under the time called for on the package because it was going into the oven and would continue to cook and I didn’t want them to get too soft. I mixed the cooked rotini, steamed broccoli, ham and cheese soup mixture into a 9×13 dish then I topped with shredded cheese (I only had taco and nacho shredded cheese) and the breadcrumbs. It went into the oven for 25 minutes at 400 degrees.
I admit I had some second thoughts while I was making it. Things often sound good in my head but fail in real life. Luckily and surprisingly it turned out really well! Hubby had two servings so he liked it for sure! When I make this again in the future (oh yes there will be a next time) I am going to add parmesan cheese. Hubby says that will make it perfect and I agree.