Wednesday, September 7, 2011

My Family's Favorite Dinner

Ok, well, I guess I shouldn't label any as "My Family's Favorite Dinner", since there are a lot of those.
It does seem a little rare though, that all 6 of us, actually will sit and eat and enjoy the same dinner! So, when I post our favorites, like the one pictured above, I call it "My Family's Favorite Dinner".
This has been a long time favorite, and the amount you see pictured here, will normally be completely gone within a half hour! If not, there will be an average portion left, which is then put in a round Ziploc container (my favorites to keep leftovers, especially soups, chili, and casseroles!), and put in the fridge for some lucky person to eat the next day!
This is also a fairly quick and simple recipe, although you will have some extra dishes with this one.
Here is the recipe;

Ham and Potato Chowder

2 or 3 Hatfield Maple Ham Steaks (cut into 1 inch cubes)
6-10 medium to large red potatoes (cubed and skinned if you prefer)
1 large green pepper (chopped)
1 medium sweet or yellow onion (chopped)
pepper to taste
2 cups of milk
3 tablespoons of flour, sifted
Half pound of sliced Cooper cheese (or your favorite, American seems to have the better taste)
2 tablespoons of real salted butter

Spray casserole or 13x9 baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
Preheat oven to 375
Boil water in large pot, add cubed potatoes and boil until soft but still firm.
Melt butter in large frying pan, add green pepper, onion, and pepper.
Stir often and cook until onions are transparent.
On medium to medium high heat, add 2 cups of milk, stir often until it starts to boil. Add flour and stir until sauce is thickened.
Place ham in baking dish, drain potatoes and add with the ham.
Top with the veggies and sauce mixture. Stir!
Bake for 30 minutes.
Remove from oven and add cheese.
Bake for an additional 5 minutes or until cheese is melted.
Sauce will thicken while it sits!

You can always adjust the amounts to your liking. Some may like more or less sauce, plain ham, rather then maple flavor. I wouldn't really suggest a different potato, although yukon gold does work well, you have to be careful and find a good potato that does not hold to much water, I have had this happen, and the sauce does get extra runny!
You can also choose a different cheese. I have used Clearfield American cheese, and it works very well. Cooper just has an extra tasty sharpness to it.
We just had this for dinner the other night, and I should mention that the reason there is a small section without cheese, is because our oldest son, Aaron, is going through a phase where he does not like melted cheese. lol. Although, he will have seconds, and he does not seem to care if  "a tiny speck of cheese is on his plate".
My husband also said the other night that he wondered if the sausage gravy they serve on biscuits and breakfast type dishes would work. That would be an interesting addition, however I don't believe that would work with the ham. I am thinking of trying that, (even though it's a bit more fattening), and using pepper and onion sausage, or maybe sweet italian sausage next time.
Please comment if you try this dish for your family and let me know what they thought!

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