Ham and cheddar key to crowd-pleasing Scalloped Potatoes

Ham and cheddar key to crowd-pleasing Scalloped Potatoes

Jan 15 – Local flavor loves a good side dish, and you can never go wrong with potatoes.

And cheese potatoes? say no more

So we jumped at the chance to try Annette Hull’s Scalloped Potatoes with Ham. The ultra-bald family loves the cheesy, creamy dish, and they figured Local Flavor could do it, too.

It’s a variation on a dish that was served at her bridal shower 40 years ago. The scalloped potatoes at the event wowed Hull’s mother, the late Diana Fiorelli, who then tracked down the recipe from one of the ladies at Peckville’s VFW.

Hull modified the original recipe, which did not include ham, and has been circulating in her kitchen ever since. Her 38-year-old husband Tom Hull warned it tastes better than it looks. Their use of a cheddar soup in the recipe also gives the potatoes a unique flavor, he added.

She begins by slicing eight to ten potatoes. It doesn’t matter what type of potato you use, but it’s important to slice them evenly and thinly so they all cook the same way, she said.

In a baking pan, combine the potato slices with a can of Campbell’s Cheddar Cheese Soup and half a can of Fritos Cheddar Cheese. Hull fills the empty soup can twice with either whole milk or 2% milk and adds it to the mixture. Stay away from 1% or skim milk for this recipe, she said.

Add half a stick of salted butter, which Hull breaks up and spread around the pan, and salt, pepper, and onion powder for seasoning. Depending on the main course, it also contains leftover ham or cooked sausage spread. Sometimes instead of leftovers, she grabs ham steaks and slices them up for the dish.

Bake the potatoes at 350 degrees for two hours or less depending on the potato, stirring the dish from time to time. Test the softness of the potatoes after 90 minutes.

You have to be careful not to overcook the potatoes because it will dry them out, Hull said. When there’s a delay between preparing the dish and serving it, she says adding a little more milk and reheating it can be enough.

She often makes the potatoes without ham as an accompaniment to breaded pork chops with vegetables or salad. It’s also a great way to use up leftover ham after holidays like Christmas or Easter.

“Everyone loves it,” she said. “It’s good. It’s simple. It’s not complicated at all.”

Fiorelli taught Hull to cook and it became her passion. In addition to her scalloped potatoes and pork chops, she’s known for her Chicken Marsala and other dishes.

Hull loves experimenting with new recipes and cooking for her family, which includes sons Christopher and Justin and 7-year-old grandson Jaxon.

“It’s what drives me, and I’m always coming up with different types of recipes,” she said.

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[email protected]; 570-348-9100×5107;

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