recipes


Homemade Potatoes Au Gratin recipe

potatoes au gratin recipe homemade

One of my favorite types of potato dishes is Potatoes Au Gratin. I cook potatoes often at home since my husband loves them, but I never tried to cook Potatoes Au Gratin at home in fifteen years of marriage! So, over the weekend, I decided to try cooking it, but couldn’t find a recipe I liked. What do I do when I don’t like the recipes I find online and in cookbooks? I make up my own!

I tested out this recipe with my whole family, and served it with seared scallops, and fresh carrots. I have to say, carrots don’t really go well with scallops; so lesson learned! Haha That being said, they all loved the way I cooked the scallops and the Potatoes Au Gratin! Yay!

Potatoes Au Gratin is a tasty side dish, especially during the colder months. There is something comforting about them; so I will place this dish in the comfort food category!

This is a great side dish to serve at home, or to cook and bring to a family or friend gathering that is pot-luck style! It goes great paired with steak, meatloaf, pork, or a vegetable stew if you are vegetarian. It was a little overwhelming with seafood; oooops! Still tasty though! haha

Without further ado, here is my new Potatoes Au Gratin recipe! I hope you enjoy it with your family!

Tools you’ll need:

13 x 11 casserole dish

Mixing bowl.

Wooden spoon

Cutting board

Mezzaluna or cutting knife.

Aluminum foil

Ingredients:

4 russet potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced.

½ pint heavy whipping cream (I prefer Clover)

½ stick of butter (I use unsalted and prefer Clover or Land O’ Lakes)

1 8 oz. package of Sargento Italian Blend shredded cheese. If Sargento isn’t sold near you, this is a mix of mozzarella cheese, Parmesan cheese, provolone cheese, Romano cheese, Fontina cheese, and Asiago cheese.

Season to taste: salt, paprika, and finely ground basil

how to make potatoes au gratin at home

Prep:

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees and make sure there is a shelf in the middle of the oven.

Melt butter, and ensure it covers the bottom of the casserole dish.

Slice potatoes as thinly as possible.

In a mixing bowl: pour whipping cream and add salt, paprika, and basil to taste. Whisk or stir to blend.

Line the bottom of the casserole with potatoes, overlapping each other. The first layer should be about two potatoes.

homemade potatoes au gratin recipe

Pour 1/3 of the cream mixture over the potatoes.

Use 1/3 of the cheese mixture, spreading it out evenly over the top of the creamy potatoes.

Layer the rest of the potato slices over the cheese. There should be about two potatoes left.

Pour the remainder of the creme mixture, about 2/3, over the potatoes, ensuring they are all covered.

Cover the top with the rest of the cheese.

Cover the casserole dish with aluminum foil.

yummy potatoes au gratin recipe

Cooking instructions:

Bake for 60 minutes at 400 on center rack.

After 60 minutes, remove, serve, and enjoy! Makes about twelve servings.

Calories per serving: about 259

potatoes au gratin recipe

There you have it! A yummy Potatoes Au Gratin recipe to enjoy with your friends and family! I hope you love it for the holiday season and anytime you want a yummy, comforting side dish.

Thanks for stopping by!

XOXO

Cathy

*My apologies for the so-so photos. I took them in my poorly lit kitchen at night. 

comfort food side dishes


Cottage Pie recipe – alternate of Shepard’s Pie with beef

cottage pie recipe

Raise your hand if you love comfort food! My hand is way up! This is the time of year when warm, heavy comfort food is perfect for combating the cold weather. One of my family’s favorite recipes in the cold weather months is Cottage Pie; which is also known as Shepard’s Pie with beef.

If you are familiar with Shepard’s Pie, then you know it is a recipe made with ground lamb. I don’t eat lamb, so I created my own Shepard’s Pie with ground beef; which is commonly known as Cottage Pie. I made this Cottage Pie recipe myself over the years through trial and error with ingredients my family enjoys to eat. I hope you love my Cottage Pie recipe, also know as Shepard’s Pie with beef!

Ingredients:

1.5 lbs. grass-fed, 90% lean ground beef (for Shepard’s Pie, substitute ground lamb)

4 Russet Potatoes made into mashed potatoes

1 cup shredded mild cheddar

3/4 cup chicken broth

3 carrots chopped

3/4 lb. green beans OR 1 bag of frozen peas (my family seems to prefer peas)

2 cups sliced mushrooms or 2 cans of sliced mushrooms

4 teaspoons Paprika

2 diced or smashed garlic cloves

1/4 cup chopped onions

1 tablespoon Olive Oil

Yields: 8 servings

cottage pie recipe

How to make Cottage Pie or Shepard’s Pie with beef:

Start by boiling the four potatoes. When they are soft enough, mash up the potatoes, and mix in a half cup of milk, three pats of butter, and 1/4 cup chicken broth to help the mashed potatoes not get dry. The rest of the chicken broth will go into the meat mixture.

While the potatoes are cooking, cook the ground beef with a tablespoon of olive oil. Then, chop the carrots, onions, mushrooms (unless you use cans) and beans (if you use beans instead of peas). Throw all of the ingredients, including the garlic and paprika, into a mixing bowl. Stir until everything is mixed together. Keep the mashed potatoes separate.

cottage pie recipecottage pie recipe

Once everything is mixed together, scoop the mixture into a large casserole dish. Using a wooden spoon, smooth out the mixture so that it lays flat in the casserole dish.

cottage pie recipecottage pie recipe

Once your mashed potatoes are ready, scoop them into the casserole dish, on top of the meat mixture. You will want to smooth out the mashed potatoes on top of the mixture to make a flat top. This can be done with a wooden spoon.

cottage pie recipecottage pie recipe

When the mashed potatoes are nice and flat on top of the beef mixture, sprinkle the shredded cheddar on top of the mashed potatoes. Try to spread the cheese evenly on top of the casserole so that when it bakes, the cheese melts evenly on top.

cottage pie recipe

Cover your casserole dish. My casserole dish has a glass lid, but if you don’t have a lid for your casserole dish you can cover it with tin foil or aluminum foil.

Bake your Cottage Pie for 30 minutes at 400 degrees. After 30 minutes, remove the lid or foil and bake for another five minutes at 400 degrees. The total cooking time for Cottage Pie, from when you start boiling the potatoes, to when the casserole is done in the oven, is about 2 hours. Be sure to allow enough cooking time in your schedule. This is a dish you can always prepare ahead of time too! That is what I love about casserole-style dishes, you can prep them ahead of time, and then just bake them when you are ready!

This is an all-in-one dish, so you don’t need any side dishes. It is a complete meal! Love that! Serve with your favorite beverage, and enjoy!

If you would like to make Shepard’s Pie, you can substitute the ground beef for ground lamb, and this Cottage Pie recipe will instantly transform into a Shepard’s Pie recipe.

Things you might need to cook this Cottage Pie recipe at home:

I hope you love this Cottage Pie recipe, also known as Shepard’s Pie with beef. Enjoy!

XOXO

Cathy

cottage pie recipe


Crab Macaroni and Cheese recipe

homemade crab macarani and cheese recipe

pictured: Cathy’s homemade Crab Macaroni and Cheese recipe

Have you ever wondered how to make crab macaroni and cheese? Well, it’s really easy! If you love comfort food, and you love shellfish, and you love mac and cheese, then this is the dish for you!

I love, love, love macaroni and cheese. I also love Crab! Together, they make a grown-up version of every kid’s favorite meal from a box; without the box, and using real cheese.

In order to make my Crab Macaroni and Cheese at home, I use my personal macaroni and cheese recipe, then I add crab. It’s really easy. If you prefer substituting something in lieu of the crab, you can switch out the crab for lobster or shrimp. They both result in really yummy, grown up versions of macaroni and cheese! Yum!

how to make crab macaroni and cheese

How to make Crab Macaroni and Cheese. Start off by making homemade macaroni and cheese. Here is my recipe:

Cathy’s homemade macaroni and cheese recipe:

  • 1 lb. box of Barilla Elbow pasta cooked (you can use any brand-this is my preferred brand)
  • 16 oz. shredded Kraft Extra Sharp Cheddar cheese.
  • 1 teaspoon Paprika

Mix together the cooked pasta, Paprika, and shredded cheese. Place mixture in a large casserole. Cover and bake at 375 degrees, non-convection, for 25 minutes.

While the macaroni and cheese is baking, you can cook your crab mixture. You will need:

  • 1 lb. crab (shelled) (I buy it pre-shelled from the butcher) (Sub: lobster or small shrimp if you prefer)
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup pure virgin olive oil (the real stuff tastes best!)
  • 3 crushed garlic cloves
  • 1/4 cup chopped or diced onion (cut to your preference-I prefer diced)
  • 1 tablespoon Paprika

In a mixing bowl, mix all of these ingredients together until they are blended. Pour mixture into a medium saucepan and cook until the crab is done, and the butter is nicely melted.

crab macaroni and cheese recipe

After 25 minutes in the oven, remove the macaroni and cheese casserole, but leave your oven on, and the door closed. Uncover the macaroni and cheese. Smooth your crab mixture over the top of the macaroni and cheese. I always leave a section bare because my oldest daughter doesn’t like fish, so she only eats the plain macaroni and cheese. You can cover half, like I do, or you can put shrimp on one side, and crab on the other. The mixture is large enough to cover the entire top if you decide to not leave a portion blank.

When the top of the macaroni and cheese is covered by the crab mixture, cover the casserole dish and bake at 375 for another 10 minutes.

Before you serve the Crab Macaroni and Cheese, please let it cool for 5-10 minutes in the covered casserole dish, outside the oven. I leave the casserole on my cooktop. Then, serve it up!

My kids love my homemade Crab Macaroni and Cheese, I hope you do too! It is a delicious comfort food which is perfect for cooler weather. ‘Tis the season for comfort food!

This is also a great dish to make for holiday pot luck parties, or if you are throwing a large party at home. Although I serve it as a main course to my family, for a large party, it can be a hearty side dish in a buffet.

I hope you enjoy it. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me.

Kitchen tools you might need to make this recipe:

Thanks for stopping by!

XOXO

Cathy

crab macaroni and cheese