Sunday lunches are by far the most difficult meal for me to figure out. And if you attend church on Sunday mornings with any number of small children, you can probably relate. We literally walk in the door to our house AT lunchtime and....there's usually nothing ready (of course). So last Saturday night, I thought I'd be all smart and get lunch ready for Sunday ahead of time.
I quickly threw together one of my favorite recipes. Technically, it's party potatoes, but I never really follow the directions and I'm always subbing/adding/subtracting ingredients, so I don't really know what to tell you it's called. Let's just say it was cheesy hashbrowny goodness with ham. I'll capitalize it so it feels official....
On Saturday night, I prepared Cheesy Hashbrowny Goodness for lunch on Sunday. There.
So anyway, being the absent-minded person that I am, I wrote myself a note to set the oven timer in the morning and put it in before we left for church. I put the lid on the casserole dish, set in on the middle shelf of the fridge and placed the note on top of the stove so that I would DEFINITELY see it the next morning. Then I went to bed.
On Sunday morning, I went downstairs to make my coffee and saw the note. Ah! I'll do that now so I don't forget!....I thought to myself. So I did.
Fast forward to 12:04pm.
We had just left the church and were headed home when all of a sudden it hit me. I never took the lid off the casserole dish. I NEVER TOOK THE LID OFF THE CASSEROLE DISH!!! Then the internal struggle began....
No no. It can't be. I would never do something like that. I cook ALL. THE. TIME. I know to take a lid off a casserole dish before putting it in the oven. Right? But I definitely don't remember taking the lid off.
My mind raced on until I finally settled on the sad truth that I had indeed forgotten to remove the lid from the casserole dish. I definitely DID NOT remove it. I was positive. So I began to laugh. It was the kind of laugh you do when you know you did something really stupid, but you're not really sure what the outcome will be. In this case, it's the kind of the laugh you do when you realize you left the plastic lid on your casserole dish and baked it for 45 minutes while you were at church.
Since I had never done such a stupid thing before, I'm gonna be straight with you. I looked for billows of smoke on the way home. I mean, how on earth do I know if this would cause a fire?! I even joked with my husband about our house burning down.
(If your home has ever burnt down, I do apologize for joking about such a thing. It's just that I was caught up in my moment of silliness and was nervously cracking jokes.)
I finally realized that our neighbors surely would have called us if our house was on fire. So I wasn't too concerned. (But I was still looking for smoke.)
When we arrived home, I decided I'd head inside first to assess the damage. There were no apparent flames coming from our house, so that was a bonus.
As I unlocked the door and stepped inside, I caught a slight stench and verbally announced (to no one but me) that "It stinks in here." I walked to the oven and decided it might be wise to flip on the light before opening the door.
You know, just in case.
So I hit the light toggle atop the stove, bent down to see inside the oven and to my astonishment...
It was empty.
And then I laughed. I had set the oven timer. I had set the start time. I had even set the temperature. Yes, the oven had run its 45 minute bake cycle. But my casserole? Sitting untouched on the middle shelf of the fridge.
So I pulled it out, removed the lid, flipped the oven back on and set the timer for 45 minutes. And then I laughed some more.
CHEESY HASHBROWNY GOODNESS
1. package of frozen hashbrowns
2-3 c. chunked ham
1 can cream of chicken soup
8 oz. sour cream
3/4 t. onion powder
1/2 c. butter, melted
salt and pepper
2-3 c. cornflakes, crushed slightly
1/2 c. butter, melted
In a large bowl, stir together hashbrowns, ham, soup (do not add water), sour cream, butter and seasonings. Dump/scoop/pour into 9x13" greased pan. Top with the melted butter/crushed cornflake mixture.
Bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes or until hot and cornflakes begin to brown. MAKE SURE YOU REMOVE THE LID BEFORE BAKING.
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