April in Minnesota: Tornados, Frost and Comfort Food

Red-Tulips-in-snow

Minnesota weather in April vacillates dramatically. Two days ago it was warm and sunny. Yesterday there was a tornado touchdown in southern Minnesota and today, it is rainy and so chilly that I can see my breath.  This time of year a person can go from a snowsuit and blooming tulips sticking out of a snow drift to shorts and swatting mosquitoes in under 24 hours.  Minnesota is magnificent!

Residents of this state have had to learn to be prepared and be flexible, both in their response to the changing weather and menus.  One day it’s cold salads and meat off the grill and the next day calls for warm comfort food hot from the oven.

Comfort food in my house always calls for some type of a potato side dish. One of my husband’s favorites is Parmesan Potatoes.  They are excellent with Chicken Parmesan or just some old-fashioned sauced meat loaf. These potatoes have a hint of garlic and other Italian spices and are topped with a crispy crust of browned Parmesan cheese. Parmesan Potatoes are even tastier when dipped into sour cream and chives or ranch dressing.

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Parmesan Potatoes

6 medium-sized russet potatoes (well scrubbed and sliced in half the long way)
1/4 cup butter
grated Parmesan cheese
garlic powder
Italian seasoning
Kosher salt

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

In a small bowl melt butter in the microwave.  Pour the melted butter into a 9 X 13 cake pan.  Spread the butter evenly in the bottom of the pan.

Generously sprinkle the Parmesan cheese on top of the butter.  The butter should be completely covered with about 1/8  inch of cheese.  Sprinkle lightly with garlic powder and Italian seasoning.

Place potato halves sliced side down on top of the cheese. Sprinkle lightly with some kosher salt.

Bake for 40-45 minutes until done and browned.

IMPORTANT!!!! You must let the potatoes cool for at LEAST FIVE FULL MINUTES or the cheese will not stick to the tops of your potatoes.  If the cheese does not stick to the tops of your potatoes this recipe becomes one big fail!

When potatoes have cooled for at least five minutes, remove from pan with a spatula, plate and serve with dipping sauces.

 

 

 

 

 

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