- STEP 1
1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees (fan oven).
2. Grease a large deep dish
- whatever size works but the larger the dish the more crispy the bake!
- STEP 2
1. In a large saucepan, melt the butter.
- Be careful not to overcook it, just melted is what we're looking for.
2. Add the flour to the butter, stirring constantly until it begins to bubble.
- Whatever you do: DO NOT STOP STIRRING; or you'll be left with pancakes.
3. Remove the pan from the heat.
4. Slowly add the milk, stirring constantly. The best trick here is to pour a bit, mix fully, pour more, mix fully.
5. Return the pan to the heat - stirring until boiling. Keep the mixture at a steady boil for 2 minutes. (Keep stirring!).
- Make sure it is not so hot that it is bubbling over.
- The sauce should now be thick and creamy to stir.
6. Add ⅔'s of the cheese to the sauce and mix until fully melted.
Now your creamy sauce is completed, take it off the heat!
- STEP 3
1. Slice potatoes, into thin but not transparent slices.
2. boil the potatoes until soft and easy to cut through
1. whatever veg or content you choose, it's important that they're cooked before they enter the sauce. This way you KNOW that it will be delicious and don't have to worry about whether it is cooked in the bake.
2. for any veg which needs oil to cook, it is really important to drain it of any oil after cooking it. This has the potential to ruin an incredible bake.
My personal favourite is mushrooms and leeks so here is how to make them:
1. thinly slice the mushrooms
2. drizzle a little oil over them
3. cook in the preheated oven for 3-5 minutes
4. drain of any oil (using paper towel or a drainer)
1. chop up the leeks, keeping them tightly in circles if possible
2. lightly fry the leeks
3. drain of any oil
- STEP 4
(PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER)
1. Cover the bottom of the dish with potatoes, just one layer with no overlaps.
2. Then sprinkle a third of your mushrooms (or whatever) over the potatoes, and then a third of the leeks (or whatever) too.
3. Pour a third of the sauce over the mix, so it is evenly spread.
4. Repeat this sequence twice.
All the ingredients should be fully covered by the sauce.
- STEP 5
1. Place the dish into the oven.
2. Cook until the top begins to brown and the sauce is bubbling.
3. Sprinkle the remaining cheese over the bake and return it to the oven.
4. Cook until the top turns brown again.
(5.) If you want it to be even crispier, pop it in the grill for a few minutes.
- STEP 6
ENJOY your delicious potato bake.
- It can be kept and reheated in the oven or under the grill
- If you want to serve it properly as leftovers, I'd add a little cheese to the top once more when reheating.