I was so excited to be asked to participate in this year’s Chopped at Home challenge-Chopped is one of my very favorite TV shows and I did the challenge last year (see that recipe here) and loved it! If by chance you haven’t seen the show Chopped, chefs are given a basket with a few particular ingredients, then get a very limited time to create a meal with them. The results are judged by some amazing stars of the foodie world and each round one person is “chopped” or eliminated until one winner remains. So fun! The current ingredients in the Chopped at Home Challenge are pork tenderloin, broccoli, cherry tomatoes, and Sargento® Four State Cheddar Cheese.
The week I did the Chopped at Home challenge was a rough one for me-we were smack dab in the middle of our move (which consisted of 3 separate packing shipment because we’re moving overseas). I took my 3 boys to visit my mom and we decided to grill out with family at my uncle’s home in his new outdoor kitchen. Because I was under all the moving stress the entire family banded together to do the challenge together and make it a team effort-it was a blast!
My stepdad is the foodie of the family-an amazing chef! I’ve learned so much from him over the years. He spearheaded the amazing vegetable lasagne that was the star of the evening. The broccoli, tomatoes and Sargento Four State Cheddar cheese in the challenge were just begging to join the abundance of summer squash from my mom’s garden! This was the first dish we made because of the baking time (see full recipe below). Once that was in the oven we moved on to the grill…
We decided to grill the pork tenderloin but sliced it up into 1″ pieces first so it would cook quickly and not dry out. Before putting it on the grill my uncle made a rub with equal parts Lawry’s Seasoning Salt, Garlic Powder and mesquite seasoning. We grilled it over medium high heat for 4 minutes on each side minutes (and by “we” I mean my stepdad!)
Meanwhile my mom and I prepped some more squash as well as some red peppers to grill as well. A little olive oil, salt and pepper were all they needed!
The meal turned out fantastic and I’m so grateful that the Chopped at Home Challenge made us think outside the box and shy away from our standard hot dogs and hamburgers menu. It was fun to work together as a family and enjoy a beautiful evening together!
- 1 large zucchini
- 1 large summer (yellow) squash
- ½ head broccoli
- 1 jar prepared tomato pasta sauce
- 4 tablespoons butter
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- 2½ cups milk
- 1 small bunch chopped fresh Italian parsley¼ cup chopped fresh basil
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano
- 8 oz Sargento shredded 4 State Cheddar cheese
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Grease a deep 9x13 inch baking dish.
- Slice zucchini and squash lengthwise into thin slices.
- Chop broccoli into fairly small pieces.Cook Note: zucchini and squash can be sliced using a mandolin or sliced with a knife.
- Remove most of the water from the zucchini and squash by placing the slices on a pre-greased (cooking spray) baking sheet and put in the preheated oven for 10 minutes and then pat dry.
- Add the butter to a medium size saucepan and melt over medium heat.
- Add flour to totally melted butter and whisk continuously for 2 minutes.
- Slowly add milk, stirring constantly.
- Cook over medium heat, whisking often so it doesn’t burn on the bottom, until it thickens-- about 5-7 minutes.
- Remove from heat and stir in parsley, basil and oregano.
- To assemble lasagna, spread a small amount of tomato sauce on the bottom of the baking dish.
- Layer zucchini, squash, and broccoli followed by a layer of white sauce, tomato sauce, and cheddar.
- Continue layering until all ingredients are used, finishing with a generous layer of cheddar.
- Cover with foil.
- Bake covered for 1 hour.
- Remove foil and bake an additional 15 minutes.
- Let stand for 10 minutes before serving to allow the moisture to be reabsorbed by the vegetables.
You can do the Chopped at Home challenge too! Submit your recipe to here for the chance to win $5,000 and a trip to New York City to compete in a televised Chopped cooking challenge for a $10,000 grand prize!
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Sargento. The opinions and text are all mine.