Monday, February 18, 2013

Potatoes Au Gratin With Harp Accompaniment

Hello everyone!  Sorry to have been absent for a while.  Dan and I had the totally creepy crud, the kind that lasts for a week and then takes another week to recover.  Whew.  I hope we don't ever have that again.  It was NOT fun, but we are on the mend.

In the meantime, I have undergone two laser procedures for my glaucoma.  Last week I had the left eye done and today the right eye.  I have had glaucoma for 30 years and am on maximum medications and my pressures won't stay down where they would like them to be.  So, they zapped each eyeball with a fancy little laser (the procedure is called an SLT).  The purpose is to create new drainage pathways.  It took about 5 minutes for each eye.  My eye felt a little irritated for a couple of days, and then it cleared up.  Today, the pressure in my left eye (first eye done) had dropped 7  points in one week.  The pressure usually runs about 23/24 with 4 medications twice a day which is way higher than they would like it to be.  Today, after just one week, the pressure was down to 16!!  Hip, hip, hooray!!  My pressures have not been in the teens for 20 years.  So grateful for the miracles of science and Dr. Bergman.  : )  I will return in six weeks for pressure checks and then my medications will be adjusted, hopefully eliminating  a couple of them!

Now that we are on the mend from our bout of creepy crudiness and our appetites are beginning to return, I had the in town family over for dinner last night.  Do you every get a craving for something and you just have to make it?  Mine was potatoes au gratin. Had to have them.  Cheese, potatoes, onions, creamy goodness.  Yum.  I made a 9x13 pan and there were absolutely none left.  Not.  One.  Bite.  Soooooo good and not hard to make at all.  Here is what you need.

4 pounds of russet potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons of butter
2 cups whole milk
1 small onion, minced
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 heaping tablespoon corn starch
8 ounce block of cheddar cheese, grated
1/2 tsp salt
lots of fresh cracked black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit

Peel potatoes and slice about 1/4 inch thick.  Mince small onion and add to potatoes.  Mince clove of garlic.  Add butter to deep saucepan and melt at medium temp.  Add 2 cups of milk, heaping tablespoon of corn starch, minced garlic, salt, and lots of black pepper.   Stir until milk begins to simmer.  Add all of the grated cheese.  Mix until cheese is melted.  Remove pan from stove.

Grease a 9 x 13 baking dish.  Add potatoes and onions.  Pour sauce over potatoes, should just barely cover potatoes.  Cover with aluminum foil and put in oven for 20 minutes.  Remove the foil and continue to bake for an additional 35/40 minutes until the potatoes are fork tender and the cheese has started to brown.  Remove from oven.  Serve.

These are SOOOOOOOOOOO delicious, you really need to make some as soon as you can.  They are good with any meat.  We had them with grilled barbecued pork chops and grilled asparagus.  Yum.  Yum.  Yum.  

If you know me at all, you know I never met a potato I didn't like and these are one of my most favorite ways to enjoy them.  What's not to like?  Seriously?  Cheese, potatoes, onions, deliciousness.  Is your mouth watering?  Mine is and there are no left overs.  (Insert sad face here).  Guess you know what that means.  Will have to make some more sometime soon.  Give them a try.  You can cut the recipe in half if you don't want to make such a huge pan of them, but you will be sorry later.  They are worth the effort.  Enjoy.

Everyday Donna

Things to Remember:

My friend Ken is staying with us for a bit while he gets settled in Nashville.  He is a harpist and he is practicing while I type this.  He plays so beautifully.  What a treat, our own personal harpist.  Wish you were here to enjoy.  Haven't felt this peaceful in a while.  Thanks Ken.

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