Monday, April 11, 2016

Codfish Casserole

Okay, so I was working on my menu plan for the week, but frankly I'm exhausted and worse comes to worse we had ham for dinner tonight so we can have ham sandwiches for dinner tomorrow night if I'm still wasted (I spent all day cleaning after very little sleep and my brain is kind of shutting down).  So, instead of posting up my "hey, we can have sandwiches if worse comes to worse" menu plan, I thought I'd instead share a recipe that I came up with a while back.

This recipe was actually loosely based on a WWII recipe which called for boiled egg slices to be added to the mix as well as like three eggs to make the sauce extra rich (among a few other add ins), but I kind of wanted to take it a BIT easier on our cholesterol around here (we don't have high cholesterol that I know of, but I also don't need to encourage that issue either *laugh*).  I did like the sound of the seasonings that went into the original white sauce, though, so I figured I could make it more to what I wanted.  I messed with the recipe a bit and came up with this.  It makes a really yummy and rich casserole without needing to add eggs. 

You can also add some frozen mixed vegetables to the sauce when you are making it and then you can just make a one dish meal out of it.  I found I like it better by making the vegetables separate just because it doesn't look like such a creamy lumpy mass on the plate, but that's a purely personal decision :).

Codfish Casserole
  • 1 pound cod or other mild tasting white fish
  • 1 1/4 cups milk
  • 2 TBS AP flour
  • 1 TBS pickle relish (NOT sweet relish!  I use home canned green tomato relish in mine and it lends a wonderful flavor!).  
  • 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 TBS dehydrated onion
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 TBS butter or margarine, melted
  • 3/4 cup unseasoned bread crumbs

1.  Preheat oven to 375 degrees F

2.  Spray a baking dish (I use a 7 by 11 baking dish usually) that will fit your fish with non-stick cooking spray or grease it in some other fashion.  This will make clean up afterwards a LOT easier, so trust me on this.

3.  In a small saucepan, whisk together milk (cold), flour, relish, Worcestershire sauce and onion until everything is WELL combined.  Switch to a wooden spoon and heat over medium high heat until mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon.  Be sure to whisk the flour in when the milk is cold and whisk it in well and then stir constantly while it is heating and you won't get lumps and the milk will be way less likely to burn that way.  Once thickened, turn off heat and season with salt and pepper to taste.

4.  Arrange cod in baking dish and then pour white sauce over cod. 

5.  Combine the melted butter or margarine with the bread crumbs and use your hands to toss the bread crumbs until the butter/margarine is well incorporated.  Spread bread crumb mixture over fish.

6.  Bake in 375 degree oven 30 to 35 minutes or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork.   
Notes:  One, you can use evaporated milk instead of fresh milk in this recipe (use a 12 oz can).  It might take longer to reduce to a sauce like consistency, but it comes out tasting nice and rich when done (ask me about the time I realized we were nearly out of milk and figured this one out...ahem).  

Two, feel free to add slices of boiled egg to the top of the fish before adding the cream sauce over the top if you want to stick more to the traditional recipe.  Personally, the idea of having boiled eggs with fish was a bit repulsive to me, so I left them out.  And like I stated before you can add some frozen veggies to the sauce when you are heating it to thicken and then pour it over the fish with the sauce if you wish.

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