Au Gratin Potatoes

Cheese and potatoes. Can you go wrong with such a perfect combination?  My husband and I were having some family over for dinner, and I decided to cook up some Marinated Steak again and when thinking of a side I spotted a bag of potatoes and the cheddar cheese in the fridge.  How about going Au Gratin?


I've stuck with the boxed kind for years out of habit, obviously fresh is always better!  I tracked down a recipe and got to work.

By the way, check out my friend Kalika's blog, Miss Mash DIY.  She makes awesome crafts and just started her blog for her projects!  If you are into crafting, this is the blog for you!

To get started with the potatoes, I sliced into pieces about 1/4" thick, then layered them in the bottom of a casserole dish sprayed with nonstick spray.  I sliced a small onion into rings and layered them on top, then repeated with another layer of potatoes.  I topped them off with some salt and pepper.

Now, for the sauce.  I melted butter in a saucepan, then added in some flour and salt and stirred for about 1 minute over medium heat.  I stirred in the milk, then used a whisk to stir the mixture until it began to thicken.  Finally, I poured in the cheese and stirred until it was melted.
I poured the cheese sauce over all the potatoes, then covered the dish with foil and popped it in the oven.


I let it bake for an hour and a half when it was ready to go.  Now in the picture below the edges are burnt a tad, and that's because the hubby got off work late so I had to keep it in the oven a bit longer than expected.  No worries, this didn't effect the flavor.


These were awesome and the perfect side for our steak!  I will never return to the boxed version.  Fresh potatoes make all the difference and that cheese sauce was seriously fantastic.  I stuck with the recipe this time around because this was new to me, but next time I am thinking I will toss in some paprika and if I'm feeling really crazy some turkey bacon as well.  YUM!

Au Gratin Potatoes Recipe

Ingredients:

4 russet potatoes
1 onion
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons pepper
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups milk
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Spray a casserole dish with nonstick cooking spray.  Cut potatoes into slices about 1/4 thick, and slice and onion into rings.  Layer about half the potatoes in the bottom of the casserole dish, then add the onion slices over the top.  Finish with the remaining potatoes, and add salt and pepper over the top.  To make the cheese sauce, melt butter in a medium sized saucepan. Add in the flour and salt, and stir constantly for one minute. Stir in milk and continue cooking over medium heat until mixture has thickened. Mix in the cheese and continue stirring until it is melted. Pour cheese sauce over the potatoes, then cover the casserole with aluminum foil.  Bake 1 hour and 30 minutes, until potatoes are soft.

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