January 20, 2010
Curried Potatoes, Vegetables, and Whatever

It doesn’t really fit the theme of my recent posts, but I’ve been enjoying this comforting winter casserole so much I feel compelled to pass it on. I found the original somewhere on the net, probably Cooks.com, and made it a lot spicier.

The two best features of this recipe are ease and flexibility. You can prepare the ingredients in the time the oven takes to preheat; and preparation is limited to cutting up several things, pouring them into a baking dish, and spreading soup and spices over them. It can use many different sets of spices and vegetables, include or exclude meat, use different potatoes, come with a heavier or lighter sauce, and be vegan if you prefer.

It’s no surprise to cooks that soups like cream of celery and mushroom will save the blandest and most conventional ingredients. But as someone who could eat Indian food every meal for the rest of his life, and lives in an area with lots of Indian restaurants, I was surprised at what a decent curry this recipe makes. Hope someone enjoys it!

Preheat oven to 350F.

Cut red and/or gold potatoes into slices about one-and-a-half to two inches thick. Spread them cut-side down over the bottom of a baking dish; I use an 8-inch circular one, so I usually need three or four potatoes, cut into two or three slices each.

Cut up whatever veggies you like; level of coarseness doesn’t really matter. Scatter the results across the potatoes. I used:

  • half a white onion
  • two or three cloves of garlic
  • a few broccoli florets
  • some carrots and cauliflower

You can add arbitrary ingredients at this stage. I cut up chicken into bite-size pieces; substitute whatever you like, or go with what’s here.

Sprinkle spices over the lot. I used:

  • 2T curry powder
  • 2t cinnamon
  • 2t nutmeg
  • 1t allspice
  • 2t chili powder
  • salt and pepper to taste

Smother with a 10.5 oz. can of cream of celery (or onion or mushroom) soup. Add an additional half-can of broth, water, milk, beer, or probably even wine, but I haven’t tried the latter yet. If you prefer a lighter sauce, substitute chicken or vegetable broth for the cream-of-whatever soup.

Cover and bake for about an hour. Check around 45 minutes. The baking time is very flexible; the only issue is to make sure the potatoes are done.


Posted by Chuck Dupree at January 20, 2010 03:08 AM
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I've got my own basic recipe for a great tasty dip that's more or less nothing but vegetables and cheese and olive oil.

One 14.5 oz can of Ro-Tel or equivalent Diced Tomatoes and Green Chilies. I buy the Aldi brand La Mas Rica that's 49 cents a can but buy the Ro-Tel at your favorite store or wherever. Drain all liquid out of the can, the more you drain the liquid, the better. Save the liquid for soup stock if you're handier than I am.

3-6 oz Blue and/or Gorgonzola cheese crumbles.

Extra Virgin Olive Oil to taste- amount varies according to the amount of cheese you use, but typically 2-3 oz, at least that's what I think. I just made the recipe up so I don't measure.

I've tried all kinds of additional flavors and spices and whatever, but I keep going back to the simple one.

Eat with crackers or chips of your choice. I eat a whole can for breakfast quite often with saltine crackers. Try it. You'll be amazed that simplicity often reigns.

Sorry I'm not the measuring type, but play around with this basic recipe until you find the right ingredients for your tastes. Lots of nutrition is packed in this simple snack, but be careful of your cracker or chip intake. Spicy too!

Posted by: Buck on January 20, 2010 8:24 AM
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