Sunday, April 12, 2015

Ham and Scalloped Potato Casserole

I was having a hard time deciding what to make for Easter dinner last week. Growing up we always had ham and scalloped potatoes.

I have done that a few times; I have also made a full turkey dinner a few times. I just didn’t really want to cook a huge meal for just the two of us. So I had a flash of brilliance and decided to just put the ham and the scalloped potatoes together in one dish.

It turned out wonderfully‼ I started by making a simple white sauce. I decided that very thinly sliced ham would work best, and then adding the sharp flavored Gruyere cheese would really add a nice kick.

The potatoes were tender and the sauce was full of flavor, it was so rich and creamy. It really was wonderful.

What you need,

1 lb. Yukon gold potatoes, sliced ¼ inch thick
1½ tbsp. butter
½ cup finely diced onion
½ tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
½ tsp. chopped fresh thyme
1 tbsp. all purpose flour
½ cup milk (I used 1%)
½ cup heavy cream
¼ tsp. each salt and pepper
3-4 drops of sriracha sauce, or any hot sauce you like
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
¼ tsp. dry mustard
8oz (1c.) sharp cheddar cheese, grated
4 oz. (1/2c.) Gruyere cheese, grated
6oz. thin sliced deli ham

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter the inside of a small casserole dish and set aside.

Slice the potatoes with a sharp knife or mandolin. Keep the sliced potatoes in a bowl of cold water.

In a pot over medium heat at the butter until it melts.  Add the onion and sauté for 4-5 minutes until the onions begin to soften.  Stir in the thyme and parsley.  Sprinkle the flour over the onions and stir for 1-2 minutes.

Whisk in the milk and cream until well blended.  Season the mixture with salt, pepper, sriracha, Worcestershire sauce, nutmeg and mustard. 
Stir the mixture until it begins to thicken, 1-2 minutes.

Turn off the heat and stir in ¾ cup of the cheddar cheese until fully melted.

To assemble the casserole, spoon a little of the sauce onto the bottom of the prepared casserole dish, then layer on 1/3 of the potatoes.  Layer on 1/3 of the ham and sprinkle with 1/3 of the Gruyere cheese.
Spoon on 1/3 of the remaining sauce and spread it out to coat the layer.

Repeat the layering process with the remaining ingredients.  Once you get to the top sprinkle on the remaining cheddar cheese.

Bake uncovered for 1 hour or until the potatoes are tender and the top is bubbly and brown.

Let the casserole stand for 10 minutes before you serve. This will help it thicken up a bit, and also save you from burning your tongue!

I really cannot even tell you how amazing this casserole was. So creamy and cheesy. Absolutely fabulous!

We both really loved it. I have a feeling it is going to be my go to Easter dinner from this year forward!