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Creamy Celery Casserole

Yield 8 servings

Ingredients

  • 3 cups sliced celery
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons butter or margarine, divided
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups half-and-half
  • 3/4 cup slivered almonds
  • 3 tablespoons fine, dry breadcrumbs
  • Parmesan cheese

How to Make It

  1. Place celery in a medium saucepan; cover with salted water, and lay celery leaves on top. Bring to a boil; cook 10 minutes or until tender. Discard leaves, and drain celery, reserving 3/4 cup liquid; set aside.

  2. Melt 3 tablespoons butter in a heavy saucepan over low heat. Add flour; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly, until mixture is smooth. Gradually add half-and- half and celery liquid; cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until sauce is thickened and bubbly.

  3. Place a layer of celery in a lightly greased 2 1/2-quart casserole. Spoon half the sauce over celery; sprinkle with half the almonds. Repeat layers. Top with breadcrumbs, sprinkle with cheese, and dot with remaining butter. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes.

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