If I say that for me baking is much more easier than frying, then trust me, I am in my full senses. I developed my love for baking almost 15 years ago when my father bought a brand new OTG for us. Initially it took a lot of efforts to understand its working and most of the dishes I tried during those years failed as I was still trying to understand the OTG temperatures and timings.
But, that said, practice makes everything perfect. 🙂 Today, after many years of practice and preservance, I feel really glad when my dishes come out perfectly baked. During those testing times, one recipe which I always wanted to try was Cheesy Baked Italian Casserole. With aroma of fresh and dried herbs along with drooling looks of those molten cheese , this recipe is my all time favorite. And when it comes to any get together, my family always demands for this perfectly baked cheesy delight. 🙂 Let’s have a look on the recipe! 🙂
Serves – 4
Preparation time – 20 Mins
Cooking time – 30 Mins
Basic • Olive Oil – 2 tsp • Spinach Leaves Sliced – 1 Cup • Cottage cheese diced – 1 Cup • Cheese – 1 Cup • Red,Yellow,Green Capsicum Diced – 1/2 Cup • Potatoes – 2 big • Spring Green Onions – To Garnish
For Red Sauce • Butter – 2 Tsp • 1 Onion – Chopped • 2 Tomatoes – Blanched and Peeled • 1 Green chilly – Finally Chopped • Garlic – Finely Chopped – 2 Tsp • Tomato Ketchup – 2 Tbsp • Salt – According to Taste • Sugar – 1 Tsp • Chopped basil leaves – 2 Tbsp
For White Sauce • Butter – 2 tsp • Milk – 1 Cup • Flour – 2 Tbsp • Black Peppers – 1/2 tsp • Salt – According to taste • Cheese – Mozzarella – 1/2 Cup
White Sauce Heat butter in a wok. Add flour and fry for 1 min on medium flame. Add milk. Stir and add Salt and Black Pepper.Add cheese and simmer for 3 mins.White Sauce is ready.
Red Sauce Heat butter. Add Onion and Garlic. Fry for 2 mins. Add Green Chillies. Add Tomatoes and Fry it for 2 mins.Add water to maintain good consistency.Now add Sugar, Salt and Tomato Ketchup. Mix well and sprinkle basil leaves.
Cottage Cheese and Capsicum Mix Now,in a wok, add some Olive Oil. Fry cottage cheese for few seconds and add the white portion of Spring Onions. Fry Capsicums similarly and keep it aside. Sprinkle some salt and good ol black pepper. Let it cool!
Potato Mixture – Indian style for some fusion Prepare potato mixture accordingly. Potato layer gives a base to the dish and it becomes much easier to serve it to the guests. Heat oil.Add cumin seeds and ginger.Add mashed potato.Fry it for 2 mins. Put salt, lemon juice and pepper. Sprinkle basil leaves. Switch off the gas.
How to arrange the casserole?
- Spread butter on the base.
- Put a thick layer of potato mash.
- Sprinkle Spinach leaves over it and grate good amount of cheese.
- Arrange cottage cheese and capsicum layer over it.
- Cover it with a layer of red sauce.
- Arrange second layer of cottage cheese upon it.
- Pour white sauce over it.
- Decorate it with sliced capsicums and olives.
- Bake it in a pre-heated oven for 20 mins at 180 degrees. Serve hot with garlic flavor breads! 🙂