Spinach and Cheese Casserole
Provided by: Lauren Braun Costello
Cold-weather months and holiday meals are the perfect time for casseroles. Preparing a vegetable casserole with cheese means the kids just might go for a full helping of veggies, even if it's spinach! Havarti is a Danish-style cheese available in the local grocery store or deli. It has a buttery aroma and sweet flavor, and it melts beautifully. This casserole can be made in advance and warmed at mealtime, or it can be frozen and baked off at a later date.
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 3 cups half and half
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 6 10-oz. packages frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
- 16 slices Havarti cheese or other sliced cheese
- Gather these tools: cutting board, chef's knife, dry and wet measuring cups, measuring spoons, colander, wooden spoon, whisk, large saucepan or Dutch oven, 9 X 13 baking dish
- Preheat the oven to 400 F.
- In a heavy-bottomed large saucepan or Dutch oven, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the flour and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes. Add the half and half and cook until thickened, stirring occasionally with a whisk, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add the well-drained spinach to the sauce and toss well to coat.
- Pour half the mixture into a buttered baking dish; evenly top with 8 slices Havarti. Pour the remaining spinach mixture into the pan; evenly top with the remaining 8 Havarti slices. Bake uncovered for 25 minutes until the cheese has melted and turned golden brown. Serve immediately.