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Old 05-04-2007, 03:36 PM   #1
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How do I adjust cooking time when increasing recipe volume?

Ok, I made a complete, total disaster last night. I was supposed to make a dish for a potluck so I volunteer au gratin potatoes with ham. I used about 5 pounds of potatoes figuring that should feed the group. When I cook au gratin potatoes for just the two of us I use about 3 potatoes (with some ham) and bake it at 350 for about 1-1/2 hours. With that 5 pounds of potatoes, however, it wasn't near done come time to take the dish to the potluck so I just stayed home. Duh! Is there some easy way to figure how long to cook something that is maybe 4-5 times quantity than what you normally cook? I ended up cooking it I think for ANOTHER hour and half before the potatoes tested done.

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Old 05-04-2007, 04:09 PM   #2
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I forgot to mention -- I had the potatoes in a metal 13 x 9 pan with foil covering it.
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Old 05-04-2007, 04:13 PM   #3
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Too bad. If you had had it in a Corningware or Pyrex dish, you could have nuked it to completion in about 10 minutes.
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Old 05-04-2007, 05:12 PM   #4
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To expedite cooking, next time bake the potatoes in the oven or nuke first, getting them just barely tender. Let cool, and refrigerate if you have time. They will peel easily once they're baked, and all you have to do is slice and put in your casserole dish. Then bake until all is hot and bubbling.
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Old 05-04-2007, 05:18 PM   #5
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Oh boy, A five pound potato casserole for two!!! You need to have some people over for dinner!
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Old 05-04-2007, 05:33 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PytnPlace
Oh boy, A five pound potato casserole for two!!! You need to have some people over for dinner!
My kid could eat that by himself!

I don't call him "Plague of Locusts" for nuthin!
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Old 05-04-2007, 06:58 PM   #7
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I agree with Constance. Par-cook your taters first, then make your dish. I've been trying to perfect Au Gratin taters for years, and it wasn't until I figured out you have to cook the taters that I got some good results.
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Old 05-04-2007, 07:37 PM   #8
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The usual dish for a potluck is 8 servings. They assume that more than one person is bringing a similar dish. For au gratin potatoes it is okay to buy a couple of boxes that cook very quickly. For a personal touch add a can of evaporated milk. Cut the ham chunks small so they will stir in and distribute evenly. Put in your serving dish when cooked and sprinkle with a little paprika as a garnish.

As for your leftovers, they freeze well. You can also use them in layered dish. onion & sage stuffing, green beans and topped with au gratin potatoes.

The short cut deli is okay too for picking up a last minute potluck dish. I am sure your friends missed you at the potluck.
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Old 05-04-2007, 10:33 PM   #9
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Thank you all (or in Kentucky I guess it's y'all). I didn't even think about cooking the potatoes first, just figured it had to bake in order to absorb most of the liquid. Duh. Thanks!
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Old 05-05-2007, 03:45 AM   #10
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Jan, you had a cooking screw up. It happens to all of us.

But why not go to the party?

Would have put on my togs, dropped by the market on the way, and picked up chips and dip, a crudite platter, a cake perhaps, or whatever I could find.

Would then have gone to the party and explained to the host/ess my substitution, briefly.

The idea of the get together was to get together with the food being secondary, at least that is the way things go here.

Just my take on things. Take care.
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