Diehard "American Idol" viewers will remember Sarah Sellers as the geek-chic food blogger who made it to Hollywood Week last year. (Watch her Season 10 audition here.) Sarah has since continued her food-blogging, and has been cooking up scrumptious snack suggestions for any "Idol" viewing party and posting them here in Reality Rocks each week.
So tonight, this season's top 12 will sing songs from the years they were born. To celebrate, Sarah--whose own birthday is this week!--is serving up a childhood favorite. "Growing up, my favorite time was the holidays or big family gatherings because of one main dish: squash casserole," she reminisces. "To this day, it's still one of my favorite dishes. So for this week's theme, I thought I would turn them into a snack by making squash cakes!"
24 muffins plus a small casserole (cut recipe in half for a smaller group)
▪ 1 package plain cornbread stuffing mix, crushed
▪ 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese, divided
▪ 1 stick butter, melted
▪ chicken broth (if needed)
▪ 2 lbs yellow squash, cubed
▪ 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
▪ 1 medium yellow onion, diced
▪ 1 can diced green chiles
▪ 1 can cream of chicken soup
▪ 1 can diced pimentos
▪ 1 cup sour cream
▪ 1 can sliced water chestnuts, drained
▪ salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degree.
In a large ziplock bag, combine the cornbread stuffing and 1 cup of the cheese. Using a rolling pin, crush the mixture until the consistency is similar to bread crumbs. Combine with the butter in a large bowl and mix until the cornbread sticks together. If the consistency isn't sticky enough, add some chicken broth a little at a time.
Spray the muffin tins with cooking spray and press the stuffing mixture into the tins to form cups. Make sure the mixture covers the bottom and sides of each tin. Bake in the oven until golden-brown, around 10 minutes. Reserve the remaining cornbread mixture for the top layer.
Boil a large pot of water over high heat and add the squash. Season with salt and pepper and cook until tender. Drain and set aside. While the squash is cooking, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Sauté the onions and green chiles until softened.
In a large bowl, combine the squash, onions and remaining ingredients, including the remaining cup of cheese. Adjust the seasoning accordingly. Spoon the mixture into the cups and top with the remaining cornbread mixture.
Bake in the oven until the tops are golden- brown, around 20-25 minutes.
Side note: If you're having a large group of people, this recipe will make multiple muffin tins. If you want to make a small casserole, coat the bottom of a casserole dish with the cornbread stuffing, top with the squash mixture, and top with the remaining cornbread stuffing. Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes until bubbly.
Check out Sarah's food and music blogs at http://sarahsmusicalkitchen.com