There's not much better than a casserole, except for that one time when we turned it into a rice casserole with butternut squash and a topping of melting cheeses.
I'm always in danger of turning into my Mother, especially around the kitchen. There's not one recipe of hers that I do not love; and, with a few modifications, this one is no exception.
Wednesdays and Fridays were always meatless at our house, and if Mom couldn't top her rice casseroles with chicken thighs and/or drumsticks, veggies were the next choice. But, it was never squash. In fact, growing up at our house, squash was something you enjoyed roasted and sprinkled with lots of sugar — and in the fall.
Shall I say, contraire mon frere! A squash's bestie is always rice. Hands down. Don't fight me. I'm convinced.
Let me tell you: This hearty casserole provides a nice alternative to plain rice side dishes and is way healthier than those pre-packaged rice mixes.
Also, this is beyond delicious. I caught myself eating it straight from my pretty, glass Pyrex dish, forgetting about the fact that I had to share it. At least I used a spoon.
As always, in this recipe I used RiceSelect's Organic Texmati White Rice, which combines the qualities of basmati rice with that of traditional American long grain rice. What's more is that this unique type of rice does not stick together, but stays firm and it separates after cooking. Therefore, instead of a mushy casserole, we end up with a fluffy, textured casserole allowing us to taste each of the flavors separately.
The butternut squash adds a sweet flavor to the dish and is bountiful this time of year. In the fall, grocery stores often carry pre-cut butternut squash cubes, which saves significant prep time. However, I prefer to buy a whole squash and prepare it in the microwave for about 12 to 15 minutes.
You can serve this casserole as a side dish with chicken, or as a hearty vegetarian dish. In addition, you can also double it because this casserole is perfect for those get-togethers or the upcoming holiday meals.
***If using pre-cut squash:
Season with salt and pepper; toss with a tablespoon of olive oil and roast on a baking sheet for 30 minutes at 400 degrees F.
This post is part of a sponsored collaboration between RiceSelect® and SheKnows
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