Let's Dish With Linda Lou

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Scalloped Potato Gratin

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Making a Scalloped Potato Gratin is so easy and so incredibly delicious that you’ll want to make them all the time. The flavor options are endless. One of my favorite gratin potato dishes is to add roasted Poblano peppers. They give the dish a slightly smokey flavor.

Today, I’m making them with thinly sliced onions. Let me show you a few simple steps to making a Scalloped Potato Gratin.

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Onions

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Flat Leaf Italian Parsley

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Chives (2)

Chives (2)

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Mac & Cheese (2)

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Off the heat, I add in some fresh chopped chives and freshly grated cheese to the sauce. Here I’m adding a mixture of grated white cheddar and some yellow cheddar for color. I’m saving some back for the top. this way the potato gratin will have a nice golden crust. I make sure to add the cheese in slowly to the sauce, mixing it with a wooden spoon, until all the cheese has melted.

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Prep Time: 30 minutes (includes the parboiling the potatoes)
Cook Time: 1 hour, uncovered
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Yields: 6 servings
Equipment: 1 (6-quart) saucepot, 2 (3-quart) saucepans, 1 (9 x 9) 2-quart baking dish, box grater, Mandolin, Microplane

Ingredients:
5 cups (2-pound) bag of baby Yukon gold potatoes, parboiled and sliced 1/8-inch thick, 5 cups
1 large sweet onion, thinly sliced
6 tablespoons of butter, unsalted, 3 tablespoons to grease the baking dish
3 tablespoons of all-purpose flour
1 cup of whole milk, warm
1 cup of half-and-half, warm
1 1/2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon of Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon of smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon of onion powder
1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
1 pinch of nutmeg, freshly grated
3/4 cup of white cheddar, (Cabot) freshly grated
1/4 cup of Colby Jack cheese (Cabot) freshly grated, reserve 1/2 cup for topping
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, freshly grated for topping
2 tablespoons of fresh chives, minced
1/4 cup of Italian flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350-degrees F.
First, generously butter the casserole dish.
Second, slice one large onion using a Mandolin and grate the cheese.
Third, parboil the Yukon gold potatoes until just fork tender.

Start by placing the potatoes into a large saucepot. Cover the potatoes with cold water. Over medium heat, bring the potatoes up to a boil. Once they are boiling, add 1 1/2 tablespoon of Kosher salt and continue cooking for 15 to 20 minutes. Take a paring knife and stick it into the center of one of the largest potatoes. If there is still some resistance removing the knife, that’s fine, turn the heat off. Drain and allow the potatoes to cool before slicing, around 10 minutes.

Note: Time may vary depending on the size of the potatoes.

Once the potatoes have cooled down enough to handle, use a Mandolin to slice the potatoes. Transfer the sliced potatoes to a large mixing bowl. Set aside.

In a small saucepan over medium heat add half-and-half, whole milk, cayenne pepper, smoked paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, Kosher salt, and fresh ground black pepper. Bring the liquid to the *scalding point. Turn the heat off.

In another saucepan over medium-low heat melt 3 tablespoons of unsalted butter. Once that’s melted, add the flour, Whisk the flour into the butter until paste-like and smooth. Add the warm milk mixture. The liquid will take on a pink hue from the cayenne and paprika. Continue to whisk until the sauce thickens, about 5 to 7 minutes. Don’t rush the process, you’ll know when the sauce has reached the perfect thickness when it coats the back of a spoon. Add the minced chives. Stir to combine.

Place a layer of the potatoes topped with half of the sliced onions. Pour half the milk sauce over the potatoes then top with half the cheese mixture. Repeat doing a second layer the same way, finishing with the remaining sauce and grated cheese mixture. Sprinkle the top with freshly grated Parmesan. Finally, add finely chopped flat-leaf parsley over the top. Bake for 1 hour until bubbly and golden brown. Allow the Scalloped Potato Gratin to rest for 10 to 15 minutes before slicing.

*Scalded Milk is milk heated to a near boil. Small bubbles will start to appear around the rim of the pot.

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Semi-Homemade Cheddar And Chive Drop Biscuits

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Semi-Homemade Cheddar Biscuits

Growing up in my house it was always a big deal when my parents took my sister and me out to eat. When Melissa was a young girl she and I would have dinner and a  movie every Friday night. Our first stop was to a seafood restaurant where we would have dinner before going to a movie.

Anyway, years later this particular restaurant came out with Cheddar Bay Biscuits they served you before your meal. I don’t know about you, I loved those biscuits.

We’re all really busy these days so I don’t mind taking a little help from the grocery store.

Wow, how did I get so far off-topic!  Biscuits are one of my favorite things to have with a meal. You can pretty much add whatever you want to them. Drop-style biscuits are my favorite, no kneading involved. Today, most grocery stores now carry that restaurant’s brand of box mix for these wonderful biscuits.

Here are my Semi-Homemade Cheddar And Chive Drop Biscuits.

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Flat Leaf Italian Parsley

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Chives

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Store-Bought Shredded Cheese

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Semi-Homemade Cheddar Biscuits

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Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 14 to 16 minutes
Total Time: 21 minutes
Yields: 10 biscuits
Equipment, 2 rimmed baking sheet pans, large cookie-dough scoop, 1 large mixing bowl, pastry brush, bread basket, Microplane

Ingredients:
1 box of Red Lobster’s Cheddar Bay biscuit mix
1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
1/2 cup of Coby Jack cheese, store-bought shredded
2 tablespoons of fresh chives, finely minced
2 tablespoons of Ricotta cheese, room temperature
Slightly less than 3/4 cup of water
1 stick of butter, unsalted and melted
1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder (optional)
4 tablespoons of Parmesan cheese
1 1/2 tablespoons of fresh Italian flat-leaf parsley, finely minced, (substitute 1 teaspoon of dried)

Directions:
Preheat oven to 425-degrees F.

In a large mixing bowl add grated cheese, baking powder, minced chives, whisk to combine. Next, add a little less than 3/4 cup of water and ricotta, stir until the batter just comes together. Do not over mix.

Using two spoons, spoon dollops of the batter onto parchment paper-lined rimmed baking sheet pans.

Bake for 14 to 16 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean, and the biscuits are light golden brown.

In a small pot over medium-low heat melt the butter. Add garlic powder and finely, chopped Italian parsley. As soon as the biscuits come out of the oven, brush the melted butter mixture over the top of each one. Finish by freshly grating Parmesan cheese over the tops. These are my Semi-Homemade Cheddar And Chive Drop Biscuits.

Note: I don’t use their seasoning pack, included in the box, I just use the dry mix.

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Breakfast Trifle

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Scrambling your eggs fast over medium-high heat, I thought, was the correct way to scrambled eggs. I have to tell you, that’s not the right way to make fluffy scrambled eggs. Low and slow is how you want to cook your scrambled eggs. I don’t know much about the science but I can tell you the proteins in the eggs seem to love a slower process when being scrambled.

After you try my method I think you’ll agree, that cooking eggs the right way makes a huge difference in the texture and taste of your eggs.

Let’s step back a little, what’s my favorite meal of the day? That’s easy its breakfast. I love having all my favorite breakfast ingredients either in a Frittata or even casserole-style where everything is layered. Then I thought, how about in a large glass stemmed trifle bowl where I could just stare in amazement at its colorful beauty. My Breakfast Trifle is the answer.

I wanted to bring a few of my recipes together to make this Breakfast Trifle. One is my Homestyle Fried Potatoes, second is my Perfect Scrambled Eggs, and third my Pico de Gallo.

I’m combining three of my recipes to go along with the flavors of a Tex-Mex style turkey sausage seasoned with my Fajita Spice Blend. The bold flavors of these spices compliment the other ingredients perfectly. I’ve posted all the ingredients below you’ll need to make this Breakfast Trifle.  I’ve also attached links for complete directions to each recipe.

Jennie-O Turkey Sausage

Olive Oil

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Fajita Spice Blend

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Onions

Onion

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Flat Leaf Italian Parsley

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Homestyle Fried Potatoes

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Cilantro

Pico de Gallo Two Ways (12)

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Prep Time: 30 minutes (includes making Pico de Gallo)
Cook Time: 45 minutes (includes scrambling the eggs, plus 5 minutes to assemble the dish)
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Yields: 6 servings
Equipment: 1 (12-inch) cast-iron Skillet, 1 (12-inch) non-stick sauté pan, rubber spatula, stemmed trifle bowl

Tip: Make the Pico de Gallo first, transfer to a bowl, cover, then transfer to the refrigerator to chill.

Ingredients For Fajita Spice Blend:
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1 teaspoon granulated sugar

Directions For Fajita Spice Blend:
In a small mixing bowl add all the ingredients from the Fajita spice blend ingredient list, mix to combine. Store in an air-tight container in a cool dry place.

Ingredients For Turkey Breakfast Sausage:
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 pound (16-ounce Chub) Jennie-O ground turkey sausage, mild
2 tablespoons fajita spice blend
2 tablespoons of garlic, minced
1 small onion, diced
1/4 cup of chicken stock, unsalted
1 teaspoon of Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

Ingredients For Homestyle Fried Potatoes:
1 tablespoon olive oil
5 tablespoons of unsalted butter
1 large red onion, finely diced
6 cups of red potatoes, 1/2-inch cubes
2 tablespoons garlic, minced
1/2 cup multi-color mini sweet bell peppers, finely diced
1 1/2 tablespoons Kosher salt
1 1/2 teaspoons of freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon of garlic powder
2 tablespoons fresh Italian flat-leaf parsley, minced

Directions For Homestyle Fried Potatoes:
Click on the link below.

Ingredients For Perfect Scrambled Eggs:
1 dozen large eggs (cage-free)
1/4 cup of half-and-half (substitute heavy cream or whole milk is fine)
8-ounces Colby Jack cheese, grated, reserve back 4-ounces to place between layers (or 1/2 cup of any grated cheese you choose)
2 tablespoons fresh chives, minced
1 tablespoon of Kosher salt
1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

Directions For Perfect Scrambled Eggs:
Click on the link below.

Ingredients For Pico de Gallo:
2 pints grape tomatoes, halved
1 Fresno chili, seeded and minced (substitute jalapeno)
1 lime, juiced
1/2 red onion, finely diced
1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon of freshly cracked black pepper

Directions: For Pico de Gallo Two Ways:
Click on the link below.

Ingredients For Fajita Seasoning Blend:
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1 teaspoon granulated white sugar
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon  ground cumin

Directions For Fajita Seasoning Blend:
In a mixing bowl combine all the ingredients together. Store in an air-tight container for future use.

Directions:
A Great Tip:  Have all the vegetables prepped and the spices measured out (refer to the pictures) and set on a plate before beginning these recipes. Setting yourself up before you begin makes a BIG difference. Brown the turkey sausage and cook the potatoes at the same time.

In a cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the ground turkey sausage. Start breaking up the sausage with the back of a wooden spoon.

Add Kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper, and fajita seasoning blend, stir to combine. As the turkey sausage starts to brown, add the diced onions and minced garlic. Continue stirring and cooking the sausage and onion mixture.

Once the sausage is completely browned and onions are nicely caramelized about 15 to 20 minutes, (internal temperature is 165-degrees F.) then add 1/4 cup of unsalted chicken broth to *deglaze the pan. Use the back of a wooden spoon to scrape up the bits from the bottom of the pan and allow the liquid to completely evaporate another 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon transfer the turkey sausage to a bowl, cover, and set aside.

Follow the directions from the link below for cooking the potatoes. Once the potatoes are done transfer them to a bowl and set aside.

Note: Times and heat may vary slightly on different stovetops, keep a close eye on the potatoes so they don’t burn.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the ingredients for the scrambled eggs.

Use the same sautépan the potatoes were cooked in.

Follow the directions from the link below for making the scrambled eggs. Once the scrambled eggs are ready, it’s time to assemble this dish.

The first layer, start with turkey sausage, then the cheese, next, the eggs, the potatoes with the sweet peppers, and finally the Pico de Gallo. Repeat this process until the bowl is full. This dish is great for entertaining. A perfect centerpiece for your next brunch. There you have it my Breakfast Trifle.

*deglaze: To dilute meat sediments in the bottom of a pan in order to make a sauce or gravy, typically a wine.

The Perfect Scrambled Eggs

Pico de Gallo-Two Ways

Homestyle Fried Potatoes

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