Cider Scalloped Potatoes

Some people consider scalloped potatoes the ultimate comfort food. But you couldn’t have proved it by me when I was growing up — even if they were combined with ham, one of my favorite meats.

We used to have scalloped potatoes and ham every once in a while at home, and at school lunch, it seemed like they were served every week. And in each case, I turned up my nose at it and ate whatever else was available.

I’m not sure what made me change my mind, but now, I eat scalloped potatoes whenever I get a chance. And here’s a scalloped potato recipe I came across recently that looks especially appealing because it contains two of my favorite cheeses, Gouda and Swiss.

Cider Scalloped Potatoes
2 teaspoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup 1 percent low-fat milk
1 cup fresh apple cider
½ cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ cup (2 ounces) shredded smoked Gouda cheese
½ cup (2 ounces) reduced-fat baby Swiss cheese
3 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter. Sprinkle in the flour. Gradually whisk in the milk until blended. Stir in the cider, chicken broth, salt, pepper and nutmeg; bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat. Combine the cheeses in a small bowl. Arrange half of the potato slices in a shallow casserole dish or 11-by-7-inch dish and sprinkle with ½ cup of the cheese mixture. Arrange remaining potato slices on top. Pour the cider mixture over the potatoes and bake for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and press the potatoes with a spatula. Sprinkle with the remaining ½-cup cheese mixture and bake an additional 20 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Remove from the oven and let stand 15 minutes before serving. Cut into individual stacks or use a biscuit cutter to cut into circles.
Yield: Serves 12.
Approximate nutritional analysis per serving: 168 calories, 15 percent of calories from fat, 3 grams fat (2 grams saturated), 30 grams carbohydrates, 6 grams protein, 202 milligrams sodium, 11 milligrams cholesterol, 2 grams fiber.