Sneaky Cheesy Potatoes w/Ham
Do you see any veggies here (other than potatoes) … ? … ah, yes, there are veggies, but you can’t see them. That is where the sneaky part comes in. You see, that cheese sauce on the taters? That’s no ordinary cheese sauce … it’s a veggie-ful cheese sauce! Made with cauliflower, carrots, onions and red peppers pureed with a little milk and cheese and you have got yourself a scrumptious healthi-fied, tricksy kinda cheese sauce.
You may have heard, if you’ve been reading my blog lately, that I have a new mantra to eat more veggies. Although I adore veggies and absolutely LOVE salad, it saddens me to report that I do not always eat veggies every day. But even an avid salad lover like me does not readily munch on veggies all day long. You see, I really, really love toast, and since toast and tea is what my daughter chooses for breakfast every morning, well, that often becomes my breakfast too.
And for lunch/dinner? … well, I tend to eat small snacks all day long instead of eating big meals. So crackers and cheese are quite the mainstay in my life. A little something from my desk drawer keeps me going most of the day.
This cheesy veggie sauce is great for grownups … it may or may not work on your kids, depending on how picky their palates are. My teenagers can tell the difference, and my older niece the pre-teen asked what was in the sauce, but my sister, her hubby and I all liked it and the little ones didn’t seem to mind it, although I confess they weren’t gobbling it up for whatever reason. Kids are kinda hit and miss that way. Personally, I was just happy I could trick myself into thinking my veggies were cheese. Because you know, cheese is something I just gotta have, pretty much every day.
- 1 head of cauliflower, broken into florets
- 2 mini sweet peppers, cored and cut into large pieces
- 1 carrot, peeled and chopped into chunks
- 1 Tablespoon butter
- 1/2 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small onion, peeled and chopped
- 1 cup (or more) of low fat milk
- 1 cup shredded Fontina cheese
- 1/4 - 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- 2 teaspoons Red Robin Seasoning (or seasoned salt)
- Freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 1/2 Tablespoon melted butter
- 5 - 6 potatoes, peeled & sliced thin
- 1 cup chopped ham
- Put the cauliflower, peppers, and carrot in a saucepan with a bit of water. Cover and heat over medium heat until the water is boiling and steaming the veggies. Let cook for 5 minutes or so, then stir, cover and cook, stopping to stir every 5 minutes, until the veggies are super tender when pierced with a fork. Remove from heat and put the veggies (with juices) in the blender cup and set them aside.
- Heat the saucepan again over medium heat, adding the butter and olive oil, then, when warm, add the onion and saute until super soft and tender. Add the onion to the blender, along with the milk, cheeses and seasonings. Start with 1 cup of milk and add more as needed to get to the thickness/consistency that you like.
- Meanwhile, put the butter and potatoes in a medium mixing bowl and toss to coat the potatoes with butter. Cook the potato slices in the microwave for 5 minutes, then stir and cook another 5 minutes. Continue until the potatoes are tender and cooked through.
- When the sauce and the potatoes are done, toss the potatoes with the cheese sauce to coat, stir in the ham. If desired, put in a baking casserole and bake for 15 - 20 minutes or so to let the flavors meld. Enjoy hot!
RECIPE SOURCE: http://www.sumptuousspoonfuls.com/
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