Thursday, January 15, 2015

Side Dish Turned into a Full Meal.

I was thumbing through "3 in 1 Books - Crock Pot" to get any ideas for something new to make, when I came upon this side dish, "Scalloped Tomatoes and Corn".  Sounded interesting, so read the recipe and said to myself, "Huh?"  Read it once more and said, "What the...?"

Here is the original recipe in the section called "Impress Your Guests".

Scalloped Tomatoes and Corn


1 (15 oz.) can cream style corn
1 (14.5 oz.) can diced tomatoes, undrained
3/4 cup saltine cracker crumbs
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 tsps. sugar
3/4 tsp. black pepper


Combine corn, tomatoes with juice, cracker crumbs, egg, sugar and pepper in crock pot; mix well.  Cover; cook on low 4 to 6 hours or until done.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.

My first question for the preparation is "What size crock pot?"  For the best cooking medium, a crock pot should be almost full (allowing for liquid produced during cooking); no way this would fill a 6-quart, not even a 4-quart.  Second question, "Why the sugar?"  The cream style corn would release sugar during cooking; isn't that why salt wasn't added, because of the saltine crackers?  Third question was "How is this scalloped?  Scalloped means a casserole with cream and cheese incorporated; ok, the cream style corn could act as the cream, but where was the cheese?

So, how was I going to work with this recipe, but make it even better.  First thing was to check out the freezer; and I struck gold!  After Thanksgiving, turkeys and turkey breasts have a tendency to go on sale.  I usually buy a turkey breast, roast it, and portion out the meat into freezer bags for future use; they last up to six months.  I also found a package of applewood smoked bacon; bacon makes everything better!

A little bit of this, a little bit of that; skip the sugar altogether.  All the ingredients fit inside a 2-quart crock pot, cooked in four hours and created a complete meal, for four, of delicious comfort food.

Come, see what I have created in my lab...umm  kitchen, I meant kitchen.

Scalloped Turkey with Bacon


1 lb. cooked turkey breast, chopped
½ cup diced celery
4 slices Applewood smoked bacon, cut into one inch pieces
6 slices Swiss cheese
1 (15 oz.) can sweet corn, cream style
1 (14.5 oz.) can diced tomatoes
1 cup crumbled saltine crackers
1 egg, beaten
1 tsp. ground black pepper
1 Tbsp. crushed dried thyme leaves



Spray inside of a 2-quart crock pot with nonstick cooking spray.  Layer the turkey, celery, bacon; cover with the Swiss cheese slices.


In a medium mixing bowl, gently mix together corn, tomatoes, crackers, egg, black pepper and thyme so as to not break up the crackers any further.  Spread over ingredients inside the crock pot.


Cover, set on low, and cook for four hours.


Makes four servings.
Mary Cokenour


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