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Triple Cheese Scalloped Potatoes

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Where I grew up, scalloped potatoes were called “funeral potatoes” because if someone in the city passed away, all of the neighbors would band together and bring a dinner of ham and cheesy potatoes. Thankfully, this satisfying comfort food works as well for auspicious occasions as it does for inopportune ones.  A hearty, palate-friendly offering for your post-holiday parties, family get-togethers, or weeknight meals, there is nothing about this recipe that isn’t perfect.  Except for, of course, the calorie count.  A minor fact on which you have recieved forewarning.  These are, after all, called “funeral potatoes” in some states.

Three Cheese Scalloped Potatoes
4 pounds russet potatoes, peeled, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 teaspoon salt
1 stick butter
1/4 cup flour
1/4 onion, finely chopped
3 cups whole milk
3 cups extra-sharp cheddar cheese, grated
1/2 cup (packed) freshly grated Parmesan
1 cup American cheese, cut into small cubes
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 cup crushed cornflakes cereal

Place the potatoes in a large pot.  Cover with water, add salt, then bring to a boil on the stovetop until tender enough to be pierced with a fork.  Drain the potatoes.  Transfer to a deep baking dish.

While the potatoes are cooking, heat 1/2 the stick of butter in a large saucepan.  Add the onions and saute until softened over medium heat.  Whisk in the flour to make a thick, pasty roux.  Slowly begin whisking in the milk.  Continue whisking the milk until the mixture thickens slightly.  Stir in the cheeses.  Salt & pepper to taste.

Pour the cheese mixture over the potatoes.  Stir the potatoes slightly until they are well coated with the cheese mixture.

In a small, microwave safe bowl, melt the remaining butter, then stir in the crushed cornflakes.  Sprinkle atop the potatoes.  Bake in an oven preheated to 350 degrees for 30-40 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbling and the cornflakes have turned golden brown.  Allow to cool slightly before serving.

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