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Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Works for Me Wednesday: Scalloped Potatoes & Chipotle Rubbed Flank Steak

This week's theme for Works for Me Wednesday is recipes that are five ingredients or fewer. The steak is three ingredients, and the potatoes are six, so between the both, you have two recipes for fewer than 10 ingredients.

I have actually heard people talk about how hard scalloped potatoes are to make. They are not! This method is the easiest and tastiest we have found to make them. They taste rich and creamy and are not at all gloppy and gross. I have posted this recipe here before, but I will republish it for the sake of all the tired mothers out there who need a tasty side dish that is simple to put together.

To make slicing faster, I use my fake mandoline and use it on the second thinnest setting. I just whip through those potatoes in no time at all. This is one of the few times I use my garlic press, too, as I just squish the garlic into the cream with the thyme. It does take about a half an hour to bake, but the prep time is minimal, and it can cook away on its own while you prepare the rest of dinner.

Easiest Scalloped Potatoes

8 medium potatoes (if they are yukon golds or red bliss, you don't have to peel them), peeled and thinly sliced
salt and pepper
2 cups heavy cream
6 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tablespoons dried thyme (or 2 teaspoons if you have fresh)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a 9 X 13 inch baking pan, lay slices of potatoes in single layer and sprinkle lightly with salt and fresh ground pepper. Repeat until all potatoes are used up.

Add garlic and thyme to cream and heat in microwave for about a minute or two. Pour over potatoes, spreading the garlic and thyme around, and pressing the potatoes to make sure they are all covered.

Bake for 30-40 minutes, until cream has thickened and edges are lightly browned.

Chipotle Rubbed Flank Steak
I think I've posted this before, too, but it bears repeating, because it is so tasty.

3 lbs flank steak
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon chipotle powder

Rub the steak all over with the salt and the chipotle. Grill over high heat/hot coals for about 10-15 minutes, turning once, or until it is done to your liking. This should be at most medium, medium rare is better. Allow to rest 5-10 minutes, and slice thinly across the grain. Serve with warm tortillas, corn or flour, lettuce, crumbled queso fresco, diced tomatoes, guacamole, sour cream, whatever you like, tomato rice and perhaps beans. This is a great dinner, and quick, quick, quick.

edited to add:

I just remembered this one. A friend used to make this and I started doing it. This is a loose recipe, I make it to be enough, whatever that looks like.

Grilled Salmon with Creamy Feta Sauce

3 lbs Salmon steaks
1/2 lb tomato basil or tomato olive feta, crumbled
2 tablespoons butter
enough heavy cream to thin the sauce

Grill salmon so that it is just done. If your fish flakes, it is overcooked, but you don't want it raw in the center either.
Heat feta with butter in a sauce pan to melt, and add cream to it to make it a more sauce like consistency. Serve over the salmon. Make a salad to eat with this, and cous cous or rice pilaf or some other grain, when asparagus is in season, some grilled or broiled asparagus is also great with this.

Great food with minimal fuss works for me!

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