Just trying to use up the potatoes I had leftover in the house, so I tried another recipe for a staple side dish that I could make from scratch and get away from using the boxed variety. I had some leftover ham inside the freezer that I thought would go along nicely with the au gratin and save me from having to spend money at the grocery store.
This recipe really wasn’t hard at all, but I think the next time I make the dish, it will turn out better after learning from a few mistakes…You’ll notice that in my pictures the potatoes look “brown.” That is only because I was trying to plan out my time wisely and had sliced up the potatoes a few hours in advance and placed them in a covered dish inside the refrigerator until I was ready to bake. Not complaining at all since it meant I was able to have some free time to visit with a friend and not worry about watching the clock and leaving myself enough time for dinner prep!
Warning!!! Potatoes do NOT like to be subjected to air. They show their complete hatred of the stuff by turning a lovely purply-brown. Blah! If I do the same thing again, I think it would be wise of me to soak them in salt water until I bake them.
On the other hand, they did taste good and were the perfect texture after baking. I just wish mine would have turned out as pretty as the the original over at “For the Love of Cooking.”
Here’s what you will need to make the dish:
- 4-5 large russet potatoes, peeled and sliced 1/8 inch thick
- 1/4 C. butter
- 1/2 onion, diced
- 1 T. flour
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 C. milk
- 2 C. cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1/4 C. Italian bread crumbs
Start by cleaning, peeling 4-5 LARGE russet potatoes (mine were really little so I had to use more).
Use a mandolin or the side of your grater to slice the potatoes into 1/8 inch thick slices.
Melt 1/4 C. butter in saucepan over medium heat. Cook 1/2 onion, diced, in butter about 2 minutes, stirring occasionally, until tender. Stir in 1 T. flour and salt and pepper to taste. Cook, stirring constantly, until bubbly; remove from heat.
Slowly stir in 2 C. milk.
Add 1 1/2 C. shredded cheddar cheese. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly.
Boil and stir 1 minute until the cheese is completely melted. Spread potatoes in casserole dish. Pour cheese sauce over potatoes. Bake uncovered for 1 hour at 375 degrees.
Mix 1/2 C. cheese and 1/4 C. dry Italian bread crumbs (I was all out so I crumbled up a piece of homemade white bread); sprinkle over potatoes; add a little more salt and pepper. Bake uncovered 15-20 minutes longer until top is brown and bubbly.
Serve and enjoy!