Call it potato scallop, call it potato bake. Whatever you call it, it’s cheesy, it’s carby – it’s cheesy potato bake! And it’s the perfect Christmas side dish whether you’re one of my Australian readers bracing for a hot one or my US-based ones bracing for snow.
Cheesy potato bake
The best thing about cheesy potato bake is that it’s really easy to make. The one thing you’ll need is a bit of patience and a sharp knife. You’re going to need to cut those potatoes thin so that they cook all the way through.
Simple is best
There’s a lot of potato bake recipes out there. But one thing I wanted to do with this is make it really simple. As it’s part of my Christmas side dish I am looking to make sure that you’ve always got one part of your mind free so that you can chat with family or have the inevitable distractions.
Make ahead of time!
The other thing that is important about this recipe is that it can be made ahead of time. If your oven space is limited and you need to pop in the all important roast, this can have been done and already covered with foil. See?! Easy!
Cheesy mac and cheese or cheesy potato bake?
I have also simplified this recipe so that it’s not far off my mac and cheese recipe. The cheese roux is an imperative part, but that really does always sound more complicated than it is. One of the key components is to make it really garlicky. That garlicky kick is something that I think suits potato dishes perfectly.
Can I reheat this cheesy potato bake?
Yes! Pop on some foil and pop it back into the oven.
What potatoes should i use?
I always like to use the all purpose potato, Russet or Sebago.
WHAT SIZE BAKING TRAY DO YOU USE?
(26 x 18 x 4 cm / 10 x 7 x 1.5 inches)
If you have any questions or would like to leave a review, please do so here! I always love answering your food and recipe related questions and hearing your feedback on my recipes.
Images by Alanna Penna Photography.
Cheesy potato bake
- 2 garlic bulbs
- 1 cup olive oil
- 1.5 kg potatoes peeled and finely sliced
- 75 g butter salted
- 1/2 cup white all purpose flour
- 3 cups milk
- 100 g white cheddar grated + 30g extra
- 50 g gruyere grated
- 50 g parmesan grated
- salt and pepper
- fresh chives finely sliced optional
- Preheat the oven to 120 degrees Celsius / 250 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Peel the garlic by breaking the cloves away and placing them into a heatproof bowl. Submerge in boiling hot water for 5 minutes and drain. The skin will become loose and easy to peel away.
- Place the garlic cloves into an ovenproof dish and fully submerge in olive oil. It's important the garlic is fully submerged in the olive oil so it does not burn. Bake for 2 hours or until the garlic has browned in colour and is soft to touch. There should be a slight bubble to the oil while the garlic bakes.
- Remove the garlic from the oven and increase the temperature to 180 degrees Celsius / 355 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Separate the garlic confit cloves from the oil and reserve the oil in a glass jar to use at another time. Using the back of a spoon, mash the garlic confit cloves until a chunky paste forms.
- Place the sliced potatoes in a bowl and cover with cold water. Move the potatoes around with your hand until the water has turned murky. Drain the potatoes and repeat. This time the water should run clear. Place the potatoes onto absorbent paper and pat dry with a second piece of absorbent paper. Remove as much moisture as possible.
- Layer the potatoes in a baking dish (26 x 18 x 4 cm / 10 x 7 x 1.5 inches) so they are standing upright and very snug. Set to the side.
- In a saucepan on a medium heat, combine the butter and 1 tbsp of the garlic confit olive oil and cook until melted. Add the flour and garlic to the pan and whisk to form a roux. Stir constantly for 1 – 2 minutes.
- Add the milk to the roux, one cup at a time and whisk until combined and lump free. Repeat this step 2 more times until you have used up all the milk. Whisk the sauce for 5 minutes or until slightly thickened.
- Take off the heat and stir through the cheese with a big pinch of salt and pepper. Season to taste.
- Pour the sauce all over the potatoes and sprinkle over the remaining cheese. Bake for 45 – 50 minutes. If the top is getting to golden, cover with alfoil. Serve immediately with a sprinkling of chives.