A new culinary adventure…

What better way to start than with soothing comfort food.  Warm, creamy, rich comfort food.  Meat and potatoes.  The meals mom always made on chilly winter days.  Grab a blanket, your fuzzy slippers, and a mug of steaming hot chocolate…go ahead…throw in an extra handful of mini marshmallows.

Ham and Scalloped Potatoes

2 cups ham
3 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
3 cups milk
4 cups potatoes
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic – diced or pressed

Peel potatoes, thinly slice, and set aside.  Slice or dice ham and set aside.  Place butter in a 4-cup glass measuring cup and microwave 30 to 60 seconds until melted.  Whisk in salt, pepper, and flour.  Gradually whisk in milk until smooth.  Stir in garlic.  Microwave on high for 3 minutes.  Whisk.  Microwave on high for another 3 minutes.  Whisk again.  If sauce is thin, microwave for another 3 minutes on high until sauce is smooth and slightly thickened, but keep a close eye on it, as it tends to boil over in the last few minutes.  Layer half of the potatoes, ham, onions and sauce in a 2-quart casserole dish.  Repeat layers.  Cover.  Microwave on high 18 minutes or until potatoes are tender.  Let stand, covered, for 5 minutes.

Amy’s Notes:

This recipe is adapted from a scalloped potato recipe found in The Microwave Cookbook (Copyright General Electric 1998).  I added ham and garlic to give it my own spin.  Every time I make it, this recipe reminds me of the one my mom used to make when I was little.  Most recipes call for baking the scalloped potatoes, but mom always microwaved hers, and after a few attempts at baked scalloped potatoes, I decided the microwave is the only way to go.  Not only is the sauce creamier, but also the cooking time is cut in half.  It’s a great, hardy meal, even on a busy weeknight!

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