I made this cheesy potato casserole for an Easter potluck. I grew up eating Funeral Potatoes. I think it's a Utah Mormon thing. I have also eaten this dish at many luncheons after funerals. It's an appropriate and slightly macabe name.
Every version I have eaten had loads of cheese and sour cream. Some recipes use frozen hash browns and some start with unadulterated, unprocessed potatoes. Some recipes also use some kind of cream of condensed soup. Clearly this dish isn't for the health concious.
My version had a little heat. I added red pepper flakes and used southwest style hash-browns instead of regular hash-browns. I didn't intend to use southwest style hash-browns.
When I went grocery shopping the day before Easter, the hash-browns had been picked through. There was only southwest style or big chunks of potatoes.
For this dish, I combined two recipes. One recipe came from food.com, and the other recipe came from The Food Network. I used more potatoes than either recipe suggested, but the final dish had a good sauce to potato ratio.
The ingredients are 6 tablespoons butter, 1 onion, 2 garlic cloves, 1/4 cup flour, 1 cup buttermilk, 2 cups chicken broth, 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes, salt, 2 cups cheddar cheese, 2 cups sour cream, and 40 ounces hash-browns. The topping ingredients are 1 1/2 cup corn flakes and 4 tablespoons butter.
I sautéed the chopped onion and minced garlic cloves in the butter over medium-high heat for a few minutes.
I added the flour and cooked it for a few minutes until the flour was nutty and brown.
I gradually added the buttermilk while a stirred constantly. I then gradually added the chicken stock while stirring.
I added the red chili flakes, salt, and pepper. I let this sauce simmer for over ten minutes. I wanted it to thicken.
After ten minutes, I removed the pan off of the heat and added sour cream, cheddar cheese, and hash-browns.
I had to carefully stir the mixture together because my pan was a little too small.
I spread the mixture into a well greased nine by thirteen inch baking pan. I spread out the mixture evenly.
For the topping, I melted the butter and combined it with the cornflakes.
I sprinkled the buttery cornflakes over the casserole.
I covered it with tinfoil and baked it for 30 minutes at 350 degrees. I then removed the tinfoil and baked the dish for another 20 minutes.
How could this not be good? It's packed with cheese and potatoes.
The cornflakes and edges become toasted and golden in the oven.
It was pure and simple comfort food.
It makes enough for a crowd. We ate it with ham, and it was a flawless combination.
It was cheesy, gooey, warm, and mouthwatering.