Saturday, March 11, 2017

Hamburger Potato Cheese Casserole

  • 5 large russet potatoes, peeled and sliced about 1/4-1/2 inch thick
  • 2 -3 tablespoons chopped onions
  • 1 lb ground beef ( really lean is preferable)
  • salt and pepper
  • Cheese sauce (the same one I use for macaroni and cheese)
  • 2 cups milk ( I use skim)
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 8 ounces shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • ketchup ( optional condiment)

How to Make It

  • I use a 2 1/2 quart covered casserole dish for this. This will stick unless you have a great non-stick baking dish.
  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • Brown hamburger and onion.
  • Place a layer of sliced potatoes in casserole dish, top with half of hamburger/onion mixture. Salt and pepper to taste (kind of depends on how salty your cheese sauce is - you can always salt it later if it needs it).
  • Repeat layering of potato slices and hamburger mixture (and salt and pepper if desired).
  • Make Cheese sauce:.
  • Melt 3 T butter in saucepan over med-high heat.
  • Add 3 T flour, and the salt and pepper. Stir quickly to blend.
  • Add 2 cups milk; stir with whisk to incorporate butter/flour mixture.
  • Reduce heat, stir till thickened and bubbly.
  • Remove from heat and add shredded cheddar. Stir until cheese melts.
  • Pour cheese sauce over hamburger and potatoes in baking dish. Push potatoes around to let cheese sauce into all of the crevices so it's well coated.
  • Cover and place in oven. Bake for about 1 1/2 hours, till potatoes are tender and top is browned. I like to take off the lid for the last 20 minutes or so to brown the top a bit.
  • Even with the leanest ground beef, this can get little pools of grease on top - I just spoon these off. It doesn't mean the whole thing is greasy - just cheesy.
  • My family members consider generous amounts of ketchup a necessary addition to this dish. I like it fine by itself (ok, maybe a spot of ketchup on the side).

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