A longtime family favorite, neighbors and close friends, Bill & Dougie McKereghan, made this for us originally when we  lived in Baltimore.  You'd have to have seen Bill "ooze" the egg mixture through the cheese to understand how descriptive that word is.  Needless to say, none of us knew exactly what the word meant, but if a real man like John Wayne could do it, we certainly could too.

JOHN WAYNE'S CHEESE CASSEROLE

 2 cans (4-oz. size) green chilies, chopped
1 pound Monterey Jack cheese, coarsely grated
1 pound Cheddar cheese, coarsely grated
4 eggs, separated
2/3 cup canned evaporated milk, undiluted
1 tablespoon flour
teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
2 medium tomatoes, sliced

Preheat oven to 325 F.
In large bowl, combine grated cheese and chilies. Turn into a well-buttered, shallow quart casserole or Pyrex dish (12"x8"x2").
Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form.
Combine egg yolks, milk, flour, salt and pepper. Mix until well blended.
Gently fold beaten whites into egg yolk mixture.
Pour egg mixture over cheese mixture in casserole, and, using a fork, "ooze" it through the cheese.
Bake 30 minutes; remove from oven and arrange sliced tomatoes, overlapping, around edge of casserole.
Bake 30 minutes longer, or until a silver knife inserted in center comes out clean. Garnish with a sprinkling of chopped chilies, if desired.

Yield: 6 servings

This recipe has been kitchen tested.

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