A few weeks ago, I was at the store (go figure), and I was there to pick up eggs for my kids. Well, two of the good eating kids, they really love eggs. No matter how you cook them, scrambled or fried, but they’re big fans of hard-boiled eggs. While browsing the store, I happily redirected myself from the dairy department to see if corned beef was on sale as it was approaching St. Patty’s Day. The corned beef was not on sale, however, there was an ongoing deal that really caught my attention. Buy a ham, get a carton of eggs, breakfast sausages and a turkey breast for FREE! I’m a sucker for this stuff, and the ham looked great, and I need eggs, right?
But when it comes to ham, I only think of one thing and one thing only. Scalloped potatoes, or often called au gratin. I don’t know what it is, but it’s the perfect balance, like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Ham and scalloped potatoes seem to be something I remember eating growing up, but the potatoes were in a box. You know the type. That box that says scalloped potatoes on top, and you add milk, butter and put in the oven? Well, those aren’t the ones. These are the real deal and super simple to do.
- 2 tbsp of unsalted butter
- cracked black pepper
- Parmesan cheese, approximately 3/4 to one cup
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- kosher salt
- 1 1/2 cups of heavy cream
- 6 medium sized russet potatoes, peeled, cleaned, and thinly sliced, lengthwise
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced
- Start by taking out your jar of sauce and add the cream, garlic and thyme. Cook over medium heat until it heats up. In the meantime, start cutting your potatoes into thin slices. It takes a little time, but your patience will pay off as you dig these delicious potatoes.
- Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Butter your baking dish. I like to use a classic pie dish for this, and I'm going to use about four layers on the thinly sliced potatoes, so use your judgment. Add a layer of potatoes on the bottom, overlapping the pieces slightly. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and parmesan, then add a little hot cream on top. Repeat the process three more times. Garnish with about half a cup of grated Parmesan cheese, making sure to cover the top of the potatoes.
- Place in a preheated oven for about 50 to 55 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbling and the top is golden brown. Remove from the oven and let stand for about 10 minutes before digging in. This will allow the cream to thicken and won't burn your mouth when digging in. I know it's hard to resist, but waiting pays off.
- The creamy, garlic and excellent parmesan cheese make these scalloped potatoes a great combination that can stand on its own for a late night snack, but goes really well with a baked ham.