Saturday, February 5, 2011

Potluck Food Part 1: Cheesy Potato Casserole

Today is not the Superbowl. But today we have a potluck. I have always loved the word "potluck". It so very well describes the chance that you will find a buffet full of delicious dishes, or a buffet full of inedibles. Hopefully my recipe will be of the former, not the latter.

We went grocery shopping as a family after digging ourselves out of yet another four inches of snow this morning, and driving as a group to the munchkins' gymnastics classes. I am grateful for the driving, as my car and snow do not mix well. But, shopping with a three-year-old in tow is...distracting. Especially when you don't have a list (or even a written recipe).
 Here is my attempt, and a few notes about what I might do differently, if, you know, I actually planned ahead next time.

  • 32oz bag frozen "Southern-Style" hash brown potatoes
  • 2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 1-2 cans cream of mushroom soup (* See Note below)
  • 24oz tub sour cream
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 1 large can French's Cheddar french fried onions
  • Olive oil, salt, and pepper

  1.  Heat oven to 350
  2. Heat 1-2 Tbsp olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat until shimmering.
  3. Chop the onion into  about 1/2 inch pieces. Saute in olive oil until lightly browned.
  4. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the soup, the tub of sour cream, and about 1 1/2 cups of cheese. (If you have two cans of soup you could use about 16 oz of sour cream here instead of 24)
  5. Stir in the potatoes. This will be exceedingly thick.
  6. Pour into 9x13 pan (I used a disposable foil one here for ease of transportation). 
  7. Sprinkle the top with the remaining cheese and cover the pan with foil.
  8. Bake at 350 until hot and bubbly.
  9. Remove the foil and sprinkle the French's onions on top 
  10. Cook about 5-10 more minutes until crispy.

* You could use other cream soups here. I suspect that cheddar cheese, cream of potato and cream of chicken would all be excellent. I forgot to buy soup at the store, so I used what I had.
** This recipe is a vegetarian version. If you don't mind a little meat, then some bacon would be excellent. In fact, next time I might fry up a slice or two of bacon first, then sautee the onion in the bacon grease for extra flavor. Stir some into the casserole and reserve a bit for sprinkling on the top. Man I wish I had bacon today...

No comments: