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Naturally Good Scalloped Potatoes

Updated on March 22, 2015
Scalloped Potatoes Intro Photo
Scalloped Potatoes Intro Photo | Source

Adding some Pizazz

Scalloped potatoes are a great way to put some pizazz into an ordinary meal. With a bit of time and effort you can make a side dish your family will be raving about. This recipe does not taste like anything out of a box. Instead it has a mild flavor of thyme that compliments the velvety potato taste. You can use yellow finn, red skin, or even purple potatoes in your scalloped dish. I prefer Yukon gold for an extra buttery flavor.

You can find all of the supplies at your local grocer or depending on your gardening skills, you could be using the potatoes you harvested along with parsley that has been dried from your herb garden. I try to keep my ingredients fresh from the current season when I choose to make any recipe. I make my own butter, from heavy cream, to use in most of my baking and cooking. I can get fresh thyme from the local food co-op and in turn, support a local herb farm.

Making this dish seems to be a bit time consuming at first, but if you happen to have some extra cooks in the house, this recipe will go by fast. You can have someone make the sauce, while another is slicing the potatoes. Everyone can gather around the baking dish and dry and layer the potatoes. I find that cooking with others, even if it is supervising some young sous chefs in the making, is a pleasure. Especially when the meal is served and all the participants get to taste their labor of love, discuss how great it was to prepare the dishes together, and decide on what creation should be made for the next time we all cook together.

Rate This Recipe

4.5 stars from 6 ratings of Naturally Good Scalloped Potatoes

Cook Time

  • Prep time: 45 min
  • Cook time: 1 hour 15 min
  • Ready in: 2 hours
  • Yields: Makes 8 servings

Gather You Ingredients!

  • 2 Tablespoons Butter, Unsalted is
  • 1 3/4 Cup Heavy Cream
  • 1 3/4 Cup Whole Milk
  • 2 to 3 Medium Cloves Garlic, Peeled and Smashed
  • 2 Tablespoons Thyme, Fresh and Chopped
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Nutmeg, Fresh and Grated
  • Dash Kosher Salt
  • Dash Pepper, Ground
  • 1/2 Tablespoon Parsley, Dried
  • 3 1/2 pounds Yukon Gold Potatoes, 8 to 10 Medium size
  • Butter, Cut into Dabs & For Greasing Pan
  • 2 to 3 Cups Cold Water, for sliced potatoes
  • 6 to 8 Ice Cubes, for potato water

Did You Know??

  • Placing potatoes in cold water will prevent them from getting brown spots. Potatoes get these brown spots when left out in the air.
  • When making hash browns, french fries or any recipe calling for thin sliced potatoes, ice water will remove any excess starch to the bottom of the bowl. This leaves the potatoes firm and crisp.
  • When making mashed potatoes or boiling for a salad, you should start off the cubes of potatoes in cold water and then place the pan on the stove to cook. This allows the potato to cook more evenly and also saves your fingers from getting splashed with hot water when dropping potatoes in the pot.

Make Ahead Tips

  • The dish can be assembled up to 4 hours ahead of baking time. Make sure that the dish is covered and refrigerated. Remove from refrigerator and let sit at room temperature while the oven heats.
  • Letting the dish slowly warm up on the counter will prevent the glass dish from cracking or breaking when placed directly in a hot oven. This type of extreme temperature change can do that to some bake-ware.
  • You can keep the cooked scalloped potatoes, covered, in a warm oven 250F to 275F for up to 1 hour before broiling and serving.

Creating Potato Slices With a Mandoline Slicer.
Creating Potato Slices With a Mandoline Slicer. | Source
Potato Slices In Ice Water.
Potato Slices In Ice Water. | Source
Heating the Scalloped Potato Sauce.
Heating the Scalloped Potato Sauce. | Source
Second Layer of Potato Slices Ready for Sauce.
Second Layer of Potato Slices Ready for Sauce. | Source

How To Create Scalloped Potatoes

  1. Wash the potatoes well.
  2. In a large bowl, place 2 to 3 cups of cold water and 6 to 8 ice cubes.
  3. Using a mandolin slicer, set the thickness to 1/8 of an inch thick. Slice a potato with skin on or off, depending on what you prefer. If you do not have a mandolin slicer, you can use a food processor that has a 2mm disc for thin slicing or thin slice the potatoes by hand with a knife. Have a cutting board or large pan under the mandoline slicer to catch the potato slices.
  4. Place the slices of potatoes into the bowl of cold water. Continue to slice and place potatoes into the bowl till all of the potatoes are in the cold water. Let them soak till ready for use.
  5. In a 3- to 4-quart saucepan, whisk the cream, milk, garlic, thyme, parsley, nutmeg, salt, and pepper. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally, and then remove from the heat. Let the sauce cool in the pan.
  6. Grease a 9X13X2 baking dish. Strain the sauce through a fine sieve into a large liquid measuring cup. or pour-able bowl. The garlic pieces along with some of the parsley and thyme will remain in the sieve. Set the oven to 375F and make sure your rack is in the middle of the oven.
  7. Place a handful of potato slices onto a towel to get off any excess water. Set the baking dish so that one of the small sides is at the top. Begin to make the first layer by overlapping the potato slices all the way down the pan. you should use about 1/3 of the slices. Keep slices close to each other, ensuring that there is no glass showing. As you begin to run out of slices, place more on the towel.
  8. Once the first layer is completed, pour on just enough sauce to barely cover the potato slices. Turn the pan so that the end you began with is now at the bottom and begin layering the next potato slices on top of the end you just finished. This method of layering will help to keep the layers even as you continue to go up the pan.
  9. Add on more sauce and begin the last layer. Do not worry if you can not fit 1/3 of the potatoes on each layer. Just make a 4th layer. You just do not want to go over the edge of the baking dish. There will be enough sauce for the whole dish, but if you feel there is not, add just a bit of even amounts of heavy cream and milk.
  10. Place the dabs of butter on the top layer and cover with tinfoil. Place the dish on top of a cookie sheet to help catch any of the liquid that may bubble over during cooking. Place baking dish, with cookie sheet, on to the middle oven rack.
  11. Bake until the potatoes are completely tender when pierced with a paring knife, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Remove from oven and reset the oven rack to within 6 to 8 inches of top broiler. Set the broiler to High.
  12. Uncover the potatoes and gently press them down with a flat spatula so the cream mixture mostly covers them. Broil until nicely browned on top, 5 to 8 minutes. Let the potatoes rest for 5 to 10 minutes before serving. They will be extremely hot!

Scalloped Potatoes Out From Broiler

Scalloped Potatoes Ready To Be Served.
Scalloped Potatoes Ready To Be Served. | Source

About Some Of The Ingredients . . .

  • I do not use salted butter due to already adding salt in the cream sauce. You can use salted butter, but you might want a smaller dash of salt in the sauce. Remember you will also be buttering the baking dish with salt if you use salted butter.
  • The herbs that are left in the fine sieve are usually discarded. If you would like to put them in the pan on top of the last layer, please do.
  • Just in case you can not get fresh thyme, 2 teaspoons of dried thyme equals 2 tablespoons of fresh thyme.
  • I use fresh nutmeg because I bake with it often. If you have ground nutmeg in a jar, just measure the same amount for fresh. The only difference is the taste. Just like anything else, fresh herbs just taste better.
  • If you do use a different type of potato for this recipe, just make sure that you have 3 1/2 pounds. Each potato type will give you a different amount due to size. I am not sure, but I think that most grocery stores still have scales in them when buying loose produce.

Please feel free to leave your comments or questions below and most of all, have fun cooking and eating Naturally Good Scalloped Potatoes!

© 2013 Susan McLeish

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    • Susan Recipes profile image

      Susan 3 years ago from India

      Wow... This is simply mouth watering. Thanks for sharing. Voted up.

    • StoneCircle profile image
      Author

      Susan McLeish 3 years ago from Rindge, NH

      Thanks Susan Recipes for the vote up. The first day the aroma does make your mouth water but the second day is even better.

    • janshares profile image

      Janis Leslie Evans 3 years ago from Washington, DC

      This is an excellent recipe for making scallop potatoes, StoneCircle. It looks so delicious. My mother used to make these so it brings back good memories. I love your tips about potatoes and using ingredients, a nice touch to your hub and a sign of a good cook. I will have to try this recipe. Thanks to Glimmer Twin Fan for sharing this. I'm glad I stopped by. Voted up, useful, awesome, and 5 stars.

    • DzyMsLizzy profile image

      Liz Elias 3 years ago from Oakley, CA

      My husband and I were just talking about this dish the other day, with me commenting that I had no idea how to make them without the pre-prepared box mixes.

      Now, I do. Thanks for sharing this recipe!

      Voted up, useful, interesting and shared.

    • StoneCircle profile image
      Author

      Susan McLeish 3 years ago from Rindge, NH

      janshares, I am glad that you enjoyed this hub and hope you get the chance to make it. This is a good, tastes like home recipe and that is why I still enjoy making it.

      DzyMsLizzy, Glad I could help out on your potato discussion!

    • DzyMsLizzy profile image

      Liz Elias 3 years ago from Oakley, CA

      I think this was my year for spectacular failures. LOL Not sure what I did wrong; I read and re-read the recipe as I went along, but in the end, the sauce never thickened up properly--it was not much thicker than the original milk and cream as it was poured over. Not sure if I missed something in the directions, or if this version is supposed to be much soupier than we're used to.

      I also managed to screw up both the fondue and the cream puffs, and normally, I'm a decent cook. Perfect way to say farewell to a year that was FUBAR from the get-go! ;-)

    • StoneCircle profile image
      Author

      Susan McLeish 3 years ago from Rindge, NH

      DzyMsLizzy, sorry to hear about the cream puffs and fondue. As far as the potatoes, scalloped version is a cream or milk. it does not have the cheese, like au gratin, to thicken the sauce. It is the thyme that will enhance the milk/cream sauce and give most of the flavor to the potato.

      I am not sure that you made them wrong and I do think it was the year of fondue going wrong. Could not get my cheese fondue to melt for love nor money!

    • DzyMsLizzy profile image

      Liz Elias 3 years ago from Oakley, CA

      Ah--so the packaged store versions are not very good, I guess. I've bought both scalloped and au gratin package mix potatoes, and really, could not tell the difference between. Thanks for clearing that up.

    • StoneCircle profile image
      Author

      Susan McLeish 3 years ago from Rindge, NH

      DzsLizzy- I have checked out the older recipes in my collection box. What I found out is that in the 1915s, they would use fresh breadcrumbs on top of the layers to thicken up the cream sauce. Thanks for getting me back into that box of goodies!

    • CraftytotheCore profile image

      CraftytotheCore 3 years ago

      These look delicious! I love scalloped potatoes, but never knew how to make them homemade. The presentation is lovely.

    • StoneCircle profile image
      Author

      Susan McLeish 3 years ago from Rindge, NH

      Craftytothecore- they are very good, homemade and kill any diet plans! Personally I find it worth it. Thanks for commenting.

    • mecheshier profile image

      mecheshier 3 years ago

      Yum, scalloped potatoes sound so good right now! I will have to give your recipe a try! :-) Thanks

    • StoneCircle profile image
      Author

      Susan McLeish 3 years ago from Rindge, NH

      Hope you do try them mecheshier. They are different from out of the box but soooo worth it.

    • StoneCircle profile image
      Author

      Susan McLeish 3 years ago from Rindge, NH

      Hope you do try them mecheshier. They are different from out of the box but soooo worth it.

    • mecheshier profile image

      mecheshier 3 years ago

      Absolutely StoneCircle! I am not an out of the box type gal :-)

    • Laura335 profile image

      Laura Smith 2 years ago from Pittsburgh, PA

      This is one of my favorite side dishes. I'm saving this recipe. Thanks!

    • poetryman6969 profile image

      poetryman6969 2 years ago

      Layers of cheesy goodness. I'll have some please!

    • Tamirogers profile image

      Tami Rogers 2 years ago from Seattle, Washington

      Looks SOOOO good! I will be trying it! Voting up and awesome..thanks!

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 2 years ago from sunny Florida

      These do look quite tasty and those of us at church love potatoes for our breakfasts so I will be giving these a try. YUM

      Angels are on the way to you this afternoon. ps

    • PurvisBobbi44 profile image

      PurvisBobbi44 2 years ago from Florida

      Hi,

      My mother made this dish for us and we all loved it. I cannot tell you her recipe because I do not have it.

      Your recipe sounds delicious and I might give it a try soon.

      Bobbi Purvis

    • Your Cousins profile image

      Your Cousins 2 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      This recipe sounds really good and I would love to make it. But first I must get one of those nifty potato slicers!

    • GetitScene profile image

      Dale Anderson 2 years ago from The High Seas

      quite frankly this just sounds delicious

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 2 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      You made me feel hungry with that picture. Looks really tasty. Congrats in HOTD.

    • StoneCircle profile image
      Author

      Susan McLeish 2 years ago from Rindge, NH

      Thankyou all for coming by and checking out my recipe hub. It is greatly appreciated! They are delicous, the potato slicer does make it easier in the long run, potatoes are a perfect breakfast food :), and I love getting old recipes and giving them a try.

      I hope all of you enjoy theses potatoes as much as me and my family have through the generations!

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