Monday, May 21, 2012

Not the Cheesy Potatoes You're Thinking Of

Since I couldn't resist buying the 10lb bag of potatoes from Meijer for $3, I needed to find something to do with potatoes. (Besides make hashbrowns for breakfast, which is the reason I sought to buy potatoes in the first place.) Game Night is the perfect time to try out new recipes in bulk, so I searched on the internet for potato casseroles, casseroles being the easiest thing to make for a group of people, at least in my opinion. Here is the recipe I decided upon, cheddar potato casserole, and immediately devised ways to alter it.

This involved a quick trip to the store (I needed to pick up fabric glue anyway), so while I headed back to Meijer for a can of cheese soup and green onions, Kimmy set about chopping up enough russet potatoes to half fill a spaghetti pot. I asked her not to peel them first because 1) she refused, 2) it's easier not to, and 3) the most nutritional value found in a potato is actually in the skin. If you remove a potato's skin, you take away the biggest point in eating the potato, from a nutritional standpoint. 

It took a very long time for the potatoes to boil, then even longer to cook. With potatoes finally bubbling away on the stove, I sliced up 2 good-sized green onions. Once the potatoes were mashed, I added the sliced onions, can of cheese soup, and the remainder of my tub of sour cream. I didn't measure it, but I judged it to be roughly 1/3 of a cup. With a large spoon, I carefully blended all of these ingredients together in the pot, then scooped them into my largest baking dish, smoothing the top with the spoon. 

Here is where I deviated most from the original recipe. Overtop the potato mixture, I sprinkled Italian bread crumb (these should be somewhat infamous on this blog since I've had them for roughly two years in my cupboard - they last forever!), then over the breadcrumbs, I added a handful of shredded Mexican blend cheese. 
Once the oven was preheated to 350 degrees F, I put in the baking dish o' stuff and set my egg timer to 30 minutes. That was enough to get the cheese melted and the bread crumbs less crumbly. Everyone at Game Night seemed to enjoy it. We decided it tasted like pierogi filling, thus was nicknamed the pierogi casserole.  Which kind of makes me want to try making pierogi now.

So if you are ever suckered in by an amazing deal on potatoes, or are looking for something new to do with potatoes, try this casserole! I am sure there are many variations you could try, too, like adding different vegetables, or putting crumbled potato chips on top instead of bread crumbs. Or even try the original recipe without my variations. Have fun! The world is your oyster. Or potato. Whatever.

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