Overall this was very good. I did make some changes because I've been experimenting with bechamel sauce lately (which is essentially what you're making with the butter, flour, then milk added later). I let the butter/flour mixture bubble for about 5-6 minutes, stirring constantly, so that the flour flavor would cook out, and mixed in cold milk once the roux was a light brown/beige. I let that come to a light boil whisking the whole time again, then reduced the heat to let it simmer with some garlic powder and salt for about 15 minutes. This evens out the bechamel sauce and makes sure that there is no grainy-ness or flour taste. Then remove the pan from heat to stir in cheese.
While all that's happening, I had the less than 1/4" sliced potatoes and diced onions pre-cooking on 400 with the smallest amount of olive oil to coat each slice, for about 30 minutes, then reduced temp to 350 (I did this out of concern the cheese sauce would separate at too high of a temperature). After another 15 minutes I stirred in the cheese sauce with the potatoes, and finished off for about 15-20 minutes, adding parmesan in the last 10 on top. YUM!
This is a great basic recipe, I was disappointed a bit in how the cheese flavor seemed masked by the roux/milk sauce. Next time I'll try the sauce with 2% milk instead of whole which is all I had. I read somewhere that too much fat can mask the cheese flavor, but not enough and the cheese won't melt very well.
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Overall this was very good. I did make some changes because I've been experimenting with...