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Valerie's Salmon Noodle Bake

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1½ c. low-fat (1 percent) milk
1 large leek
10 oz. sliced mushrooms
1 tbsp. lower-sodium soy sauce
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. olive oil
2 stalk celery
2 tsp. chopped fresh thyme leaves
3 tbsp. all-purpose flour
1 can lower-sodium chicken broth
8 oz. curly egg noodles
12 oz. skinless salmon fillet
1 c. frozen peas
⅓ c. panko (Japanese-style bread crumbs)
1 tbsp. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease 3-quart shallow baking dish.
Heat large covered sauce pot of water to boiling on high.
In glass measuring cup, microwave milk on High 2 minutes or until warm.
Meanwhile, trim and discard root and dark green top from leek.
Discard any tough outer leaves. Cut leek lengthwise in half, then crosswise into 1/4-inch-wide slices.
Place leek in large bowl of cold water; with hand, swish to remove any sand.
Remove leek to colander.
Repeat process with fresh water, changing water several times until sand is removed.
Drain leek well and set aside.
In 12-inch skillet, combine mushrooms and soy sauce.
Cook 5 to 6 minutes on medium-high until mushrooms are tender and sauce evaporates, stirring occa­sionally.
Transfer to large bowl.
In same skillet, heat 2 tablespoons oil on medium-high.
Add leek, celery, and half of thyme.
Cook 2 minutes or until golden and just tender, stirring occasionally.
Add flour and cook 1 minute, stirring.
Continue stirring and add broth, then milk, in steady stream.
Heat to boiling while stirring, then cook 2 minutes or until thickened, stirring constantly.
Transfer to bowl with mushrooms.
While sauce cooks, add noodles to boiling water; cook 1 minute. Drain well.
To bowl with mushroom mixture, add noodles, salmon, peas, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper.
Gently stir to combine. Spread mixture in prepared dish.
In small bowl, combine panko, remaining thyme, and remaining 1 teaspoon oil.
Sprinkle evenly over top of noodle mixture. Bake 17 to 18 minutes or until topping turns golden brown. Garnish with chopped parsley.
Prepared, tried and tested by: Valerie Diedrich 

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