Quick Cheese Chowder
2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
2 cups medium white sauce
1 1/2 cups water
2 medium potatoes, chopped
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped carrot
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped, cooked ham
1/2 tsp. salt
hot pepper sauce to taste
Prepare White Sauce
Stir 4 Tbsp flour into 4 Tbsp oil or melted butter (or blend of both) until bubbly.
Add 2 cups milk, stirring constantly until sauce begins to thicken. Let simmer, stirring occasionally for 10-15 minutes to fully cook starch.
Add grated cheese and stir until melted. Set aside.
Bring water to boil in a 3-quart saucepan, adding vegetables. Lower heat, cover and simmer until vegetables are tender (about 15 minutes).
Add cheese sauce to vegetables. Add ham and seasonings. Mix well and heat through.
Necessity is the mother of invention, they say. I knew it was unlikely that I would find frisée in the store. Another former staple of the produce department (along. with curly endive) that now seems confined to home gardens. So I used the leafiest green leaf lettuce I could find.
But I needed to do a better check of my own supplies as well. I was surprised to discover at the last minute that I was out of both blue cheese and pecans, so these were replaced by havarti and walnuts. Nevertheless, it was a good salad and I look forward one day to the original recipe.
This is a very good dish. Increase the chili powder to taste. I had only 6 tortillas and could have used more. One change I would make is to substitute sour cream for the ricotta cheese. But, of coarse, ricotta is much lower in fat.
Note, these are not enchiladas as such, but a casserole made with typical enchilada ingredients, and very tasty.
A nice variation on scalloped potatoes. To provide flavour beyond pepper and salt, I enhanced the recipe in the following ways: added rosemary to the cooking water for the potatoes, added a pinch each of garlic powder and cayenne pepper along with pepper and salt to the main dish and the cottage cheese topping. I think my main problem was too many potatoes (I used four and three would have been adequate) without increasing the amounts of shredded cheese and cottage cheese topping as well.