Thursday, December 5, 2013

Dad's Potatoes

I’m thinking about my dad a lot today. He is battling bladder cancer, and today he’s having a biopsy on his lung to see if the cancer has spread or if he just has an infection. I’m hoping and praying for the latter. I feel bad he has to go through this during the holidays. Plus, his sense of taste is all out of whack from the chemo, which has to be so difficult for him since he loves food. (I get my love of cooking from him and his side of the family.)

For dinner a couple of days ago, I made Dad’s Potatoes. It is a yummy recipe he just made up one day, filled with bacon, onions, cheese and, of course, potatoes. He makes it in the oven and it is so easy, but I've also come across similar recipes made in a slow cooker—also very easy.

I like Dad’s potatoes served alongside ham or pork chops, but they would work as a side dish with almost any meat. I've also made them with ham instead of bacon, and without any meat at all.

Dad’s Potatoes

1/4 pound bacon, cooked until tender, not crisp, and diced
1 medium onion, sliced thin
4 medium potatoes, sliced 1/4-inch thick (I used Yukon Gold.)
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 tablespoon butter, cut into small pieces
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

For the oven: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Place
half the bacon in the dish, and then a layer of half the onions. Toss the potatoes with garlic powder, salt and pepper, and then layer half on top of onions. Dot with half the butter. Repeat the bacon, onion, potato and butter layer with the remaining ingredients.

Cover the dish and bake for 40 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender. Remove the cover and sprinkle the cheese over the top. Return to the oven, uncovered, and bake for 5 minutes to melt the cheese.

For the slow cooker: Line the slow cooker with foil, leaving some hanging over the sides, and spray with non-stick cooking spray. Follow the layering steps above, and then fold the foil over the top. Put the lid on the cooker and cook for 4 1/2 hours on low. Then uncover and sprinkle the cheese on top, re-cover and cook for another 5 or 10 minutes until the cheese is melted.