Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Cheesy Baked Mashed Potatoes

Creamy Mashed Potatoes, prepared in the usual manner, then tossed with cheese, baked and topped with more cheese. That's some cheesy goodness there y'all!

Cheesy Baked Mashed Potatoes

It's been a gorgeous spring week here in south Mississippi, just gorgeous. What? You say it's winter still? Well, not in the Deep South! We never have much of a winter to speak of down here anyway. Basically there are one or three quick overnight freezes, just about enough to brown over everything, but the next day it's likely to be in the 70s. I noticed in my Google reader one blogger disappointed about having too much snow and the very next blog, about having no snow. What's the winter been like your way?

The mild weather, added to my own procrastination - something that I am very good at in these older years of mine these days - and I really haven't had enough time to give you very many wintery, comfort foods - not that I need cold weather to enjoy those really. You're liable to see me post a casserole in the heat of the summer, simply because I wanted it! Yeah, even in the heat of south Mississippi, because that's the way I roll. I cook what I want, when I want it, and I don't let Mama Nature interfere.

Praise the Lord for modern air conditioning is all I can say about that, and by the way, did you know that a Florida doctor actually invented air conditioning? Sure did! I found that out in that little documentary video featured over there in the right hand sidebar, You Don't Know Dixie. Seems we southerners have invented quite a few things Americans all across the country enjoy and that's a pretty cool video if you're so inclined to know that sort of stuff.

This potato casserole might fall in that comfort category - well, it certainly does for me. Unlike many southern bloggers, you don't see so much in the way of sweets on my site as you do savory dishes, and potatoes are certainly one of the many carbs I crave after. This is just a little way to fancy up a pot of mashed potatoes really, but everybody will smile like you made them feel special when they show up with all their cheesy goodness on your supper table.

I used my newly acquired electronic pressure cooker to prepare the potatoes. I've been trying a few things here and there that I am sure will find their way on my site at some point, even though they may not appeal to but a handful or two of y'all who happen to own an electronic pressure cooker. That barbecue chicken pictured with the potatoes was actually cooked in my new pressure cooker also, and I can already tell you one thing for sure about it. It's my new favorite way to prepare a fresh whole chicken to have cut up chicken for a casserole, just sayin'.

Anyway for the potatoes, I peeled and cut them into chunks, place them in the pressure cooker with 2 cups of warm water and 2 teaspoons of the bacon drippings. Depending on your cooker, it'll take about 10 minutes or so to come up to pressure and starting actually cooking, but then the potatoes cook up in about 6 minutes. You do a quick release, then drain them and mash them as usual. Not really a huge time saver time I guess for a small recipe like this, but still pretty cool.

Speaking of cheesy goodness... I realize that we southerners do tend to overdo the bacon and cheese thing, piling on far more than really what is needed, but it's just so darned tasty!  I only use 2 slices of bacon and one cup of cheese here, but hey, I am not above adding a little more of both at times myself, so go right ahead and use what you like. If loving cheese, like loving bacon, is wrong, well, I don't wanna be right! And I apologize if that song is stuck in your head right about now.

Mama didn't use much evaporated milk when I was growing up because we always had fresh milk delivered to our door by the Borden's milk man, who ironically must not have been much older than me as a teenager, because he now delivers Schwan's frozen foods in my neighborhood. Small world. I've taken to keeping a few cans in my pantry here lately though because it seems to add a bit of extra creaminess to potatoes. You can, of course, use good ole milk, half and half, or if you're feeling particularly indulgent, some heavy cream.

I used an 11 x 7 ceramic baker here - gotta love that naturally non-stick thing - but a 1-1/2-qt. baking dish should work just fine too. If you're baking this for a church supper, potluck or a hearty eating family, go ahead and double it.


Here's how to make them.

Recipe: Cheesy Baked Mashed Potatoes

©From the Kitchen of Deep South Dish
Prep time: 20 min |Cook time: 30 min | Yield: About 4 to 6 servings


Ingredients
  • 2 slices of bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 2 pounds of large russet potatoes (about 4), peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) of unsalted butter
  • 2 ounces of cream cheese, cubed
  • 1 (5 ounce) can of evaporated milk
  • 1 teaspoon of kosher salt, or to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon of white pepper, or to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon of Cajun seasoning (like Slap Ya Mama), or to taste, optional
  • 1 to 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese, divided
Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Cook bacon until crispy; drain, cool, crumble and set aside. Meanwhile boil potatoes until tender; drain well, add butter and cream cheese, mash. Stir in milk, salt, pepper, Cajun seasoning and 1/2 of the cheddar cheese; taste and adjust seasonings. Transfer to a 1-1/2 quart buttered baking dish.

Cover and bake at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes. Remove, uncover, top with crumbled bacon and the remaining cheese, return to the oven and bake until cheese has melted. Serve immediately.

Cook's Notes: If you use regular, salted butter, adjust the added salt accordingly. Double ingredients for a 9 x 13 inch casserole dish.

Source: http://deepsouthdish.com

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©Deep South Dish
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Posted by on March 7, 2012
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16 comments:

  1. Not a good winter for a teacher who wants a snow day! However all the cheese in this dish, should help me cope.

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    Replies
    1. Oh yeah, snow days! I haven't seen one of those down here for a very long time!

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  2. I love mashed potatoes fixed this way, or any way for that matter! I can really overdo it when it comes to mashed potatoes.
    We have had no snow, just 1 evening with about 1/4 inch.We've had a warm winter, but not so warm that I couldn't make my beloved soups! I do like a bit of cold weather though; I always hope it will kill some of the bugs.

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    Replies
    1. Was just watching the news today & they were talking about how warm a winter it has been virtually everywhere. They are already talking about bad mosquitoes this spring/summer due to there not being enough hard freezes to kill off the eggs. Ugh. The gnats about carry us away as it is!

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  3. Now talk about cheesy...your potatoes will make this girl happy.

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    Replies
    1. I actually do mine understated but hey, I say go for the cheese!!

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  4. This recipe looks yummy and is making me hungry right now! I want to thank you again for your awesome recipes and let you know that today your Chicken Dumpling Casserole is a feature on my blog at www.praycookblog.com

    Thanks again! Catherine

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Catherine - I'm so glad it was a hit!

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  5. Sounds perfect! Like twice-baked potatoes, only much easier! I would probably have to add some garlic and chopped green onions to this though. Thanks for all the great recipes on here!

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    1. Oh yeah Dana, those are great additions for a potato casserole for sure! This dish is really just a dressed up mashed potato - typically the only add-in for it is the cheese, but you know, I just had to include a little bacon!

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  6. Cute story about the delivery man. The cheesy potatoes look delicious. That's the kind of thing I could eat by itself for lunch the next day and still feel like I had a full meal.

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    1. Isn't that funny? I don't buy from him these days because my big freezer is usually already full, though I have in the past. He's actually the one who recognized me. I still see him tooling on by in his yellow truck some days.

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  7. This looks yummy. I made something similar Sunday, mashed red potatoes, butter, added Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing and milk, and real bacon bits. Oh was it good...
    Have you tried cream cheese with chives and potatoes yet? I use it potato soup or mashed, it is awesome.
    Gina... I don't have a profile, :(

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    Replies
    1. Hi Gina & welcome! I do use sour cream in my mashed potato casserole & some of the basic ingredients you'll find in Ranch dressing too. I agree that it's a great addition. I can only imagine how good those chive potatoes are in a soup for sure - yum!

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  8. Wonder if that's the same Borden's milk man who delivered in Ocean Springs in the early 70's? Sure was a convenience with a small child. Miss the Charles Chips truck too.

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    Replies
    1. You know it sure could have been Dalton! I'm sure the routes were pretty small back then. He kinda had that boyish look of a Spencer Tracy or Mickey Rooney Boy's Town era. We used to get those Charles Chips at our law office back in the day. You can actually still purchase them online at their site - I bought some for Christmas last year!

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