Hassle-free suppers to savor this autumn

When there's a chill in the air, cozy up to the table with dishes that feed the soul as well as the stomach. This melt-in-your-mouth Slow Cooker Pot Roast with Onions is a complete dinner with very little fuss. A bowl of Broccoli, Bacon and Cheddar Chowder makes a hearty lunch or simple dinner in no time. And this recipe for Quick and Healthy Potato Casserole serves up a creamy, comforting side dish from the microwave in minutes.

Onions and Wisconsin potatoes add a savory quality to these three recipes. Best of all, onions and potatoes are good sources of potassium, fiber and vitamin C, and cost only pennies a serving.

To find more recipes your family will savor, visit www.wisconsinpotatoes.com and www.onions-usa.org.

Quick & HealthyPotato Casserole

Serves 6

11⁄4 pounds Wisconsin Yukon Gold potatoes, very thinly sliced

1 cup quartered and thinly sliced onion

1 cup shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese

1⁄2 teaspoon Italian herb seasoning

1⁄2 cup stock or reduced-sodium broth

11⁄2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

1⁄2 teaspoon garlic salt

Spray an 8-inch microwave-safe baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Place 1⁄3 of the potatoes and 1⁄2 of the onions on bottom of dish and sprinkle with 1⁄3 of the cheese and 1⁄2 of the herbs. Repeat layers, then top with the last 1⁄3 of the potatoes, layering potatoes so that there is a solid layer of potatoes with no gaps; sprinkle with remaining cheese.

Stir together stock, Dijon and garlic salt and pour over potatoes. Cover with plastic wrap and microwave on HIGH for 20 minutes. Use oven mitts to remove dish from microwave; carefully remove cover from dish (due to steam build-up) and serve.

Optional: Preheat oven to 400°F and place casserole in oven for 5 to 10 minutes or until casserole is golden brown before serving.

Slow Cooker Pot Roast with Onions

Serves 4 to 6

1 (21⁄2-pound) boneless beef sirloin tip or chuck roast

1 tablespoon prepared horseradish

11⁄2 pounds yellow onions, trimmed and cut into 1⁄2-inch slices

1 pound Wisconsin red potatoes, trimmed and halved

1⁄2 pound carrots, trimmed, peeled and cut into 2 to 3-inch pieces

2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves, stripped from stems

1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary (stems removed)

2 cups tomato juice

1 cup low-sodium beef broth

1⁄2 cup red wine (or additional beef broth)

2 tablespoons flour Pepper and salt to taste (optional)

Trim fat from beef roast. Place roast in bottom of 5 to 6-quart slow cooker. Spread horseradish over surface of meat. Top and surround roast with onions, potatoes, and carrots. Sprinkle with thyme and rosemary and pour in tomato juice and beef broth. Cover and cook on high setting for 6 to 8 hours or until beef is fall aparttender.

Mix wine (or beef broth) with flour and pour mixture around meat in slow cooker. Gently stir flour mixture into existing sauce without disturbing the meat. Replace cover and cook on high setting for 15 minutes or until thickened. Before serving, season with pepper and salt to taste and garnish with sprigs of rosemary.

Broccoli, Bacon and Cheddar Chowder

Serves 6

8 slices bacon, chopped

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 onion, finely chopped

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1⁄2 teaspoon salt Dash cayenne pepper

3 cups milk

2 cups chicken or vegetable stock

12 ounces Wisconsin red skinned potatoes, cut into 1⁄2-inch dice

2 cups cheddar cheese,shredded

1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce, if desired

2 10-ounce boxes frozen chopped broccoli, thawed

Heat large pot over medium heat. Add bacon and cook until crispy, about 5 minutes. Remove bacon with slotted spoon and transfer to paper towel lined plate and reserve. Pour off all but 2 tablespoons fat. Add butter and onion and cook for 6 minutes or until softened. Add flour and cook, stirring for another 2 minutes or until foamy.

Whisk in salt, cayenne pepper, milk and chicken stock and cook until it becomes smooth and creamy, about 3 minutes. Add potatoes and cook for 10 to 15 minutes or until potatoes aretender.

In bowl, toss cheddar with flour to coat.

Stir in cheese, a handful at a time, whisking after each addition until smooth. Add in hot pepper sauce if using. Add thawed broccoli and stir to heat. Do not boil. Taste for seasoning and adjust if necessary.

Ladle soup into heated bowls and garnish with reserved bacon.

• Recipe excerpt used with permission. Text copyright 300 Sensational Soups (c) Carla Snyder and Meredith Deeds 2008 Robert Rose Inc.

Storage tips

Onions and potatoes pair well together in lots of recipes. They also like similar storage conditions, but can spoil if stored in proximity to each other. Follow these quick tips for the best possible shelf-life.

• Store potatoes and onions separately. Store onions in cool, dry, well-ventilated places, optimally, at a temperature between 45∫F and 55∫F, but not in the refrigerator. Potatoes require similar storage conditions, but they also need darkness and should kept at 50∫F or less to avoid sprouting.

• Potatoes can be stored in perforated plastic bags or paper bags to extend their shelf-life.

• Onions should NOT be stored in plastic bags. Lack of air movement reduces storage life.

• Don't wash potatoes or onions (or any produce for that matter) before storing. Dampness will promote early spoilage.

• Chopped or sliced onions can be stored in a sealed container in your refrigerator for up to 7 days.


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