A Squared: Scalloped Potatoes

Monday, February 2, 2015

Scalloped Potatoes

I'm going back in the recipe archives to share a new one with you today that is pure American comfort food: scalloped potatoes.

While we were in Michigan at my parents' place we always celebrate a belated Christmas with all of my siblings there. My brother and sister-in-law brought a ham up from a farm near them so I was tasked with building a menu around it. And what goes better with a sweet and savory ham than some seriously cheesy potatoes? After flipping through my mom's Food Network Magazine and finding a recipe for individual scalloped potatoes (which would have been fun to make if we had enough small baking dishes), I adapted the recipe a bit to create this side dish that ended up being a huge hit.

Scalloped potatoes are surprisingly simple to make. The most difficult part of the preparation here is thinly slicing the potatoes. Aside from that, the potatoes are coated in a mixture of grated cheese, cream, milk, herbs, and a little flour. It's all baked together to form a rich and creamy interior. I reserved a little bit of the cheese and herbs, combined them with panko, and created a crispy topping for this pan of potatoes. They were so delicious served along side the ham and some roasted vegetables.

And tasted pretty darn good for breakfast the next day too.

  • 1 1/4 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese, divided
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 1 Tbs. dry chives, divided
  • 1 Tbs. dry parsley, divided
  • 1/4 tsp. all-purpose flour
  • 1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 1/2 pounds red skin potatoes, unpeeled
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup milk (whole or 2%)
  • 3 Tbs. panko
  • 1 Tbs. olive oil

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Liberally grease a 9x13 baking dish. Combine 1 cup cheddar, 1/4 cup parmesan, 1/2 Tbs. chives, 1/2 Tbs. parsley, flour and cayenne in a large bowl. Thinly slice the potatoes to a little less than 1/8 inch thick. If you have a mandolin use it. Otherwise, use a sharp knife to carefully slice the potatoes. Add them to the cheese mixture, season well with salt and a pinch of black pepper. Toss to fully combine.

Add half of the potato mixture to the pan and spread out to create an even layer. Combine the cream and milk and pour half of that mixture over the potatoes in the baking dish. Repeat with the remaining potatoes and top with the rest of the cream and milk mixture.

In a small bowl, combine remaining 1/4 cup cheddar, 1/4 cup Parmesan, 1/2 Tbs. chives, 1/2 Tbs. parsley, panko, and olive oil. Sprinkle evenly over the top of the potato mixture in the pan. 
Cover the baking dish with foil and bake until the liquid is bubbly and the potatoes begin to soften, about 40 minutes. Increase the oven temperature to 425 degrees, uncover the dish and bake until the potatoes are tender and golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes more.

Inspired by recipe courtesy of Food Network Magazine.

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