Southern Lady

Comforting Casseroles

Supreme Hash Brown Bake

MAKES 10 TO 12 SERVINGS

1 large tomato, cored, seeded, and diced (about ¾ cup)
¾ teaspoon kosher salt, divided
2 cups shredded smoked Gouda cheese, divided
6 ounces yellow American cheese, cubed
½ (8-ounce) package cream cheese
¾ cup milk
2 (20-ounce) bags refrigerated shredded hash brown potatoes*
1 (16-ounce) package small diced ham
1 (10.75-ounce) can cream of mushroom soup
1 cup chopped green onions
½ cup sour cream
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
4 slices (about ⅓ pound) thick-cut bacon, cooked and chopped
Garnish: chopped green onions, sliced grape tomatoes

1. Preheat oven to 350°. Spray a 13x9-inch or 3-quart baking dish with cooking spray.

2. Line a platter with a double layer of paper towels. Place tomatoes in a single layer on prepared platter. Sprinkle with ¼ teaspoon salt. Allow 30 minutes to drain.

3. In a medium saucepan, combine 1¼ cups Gouda cheese, American cheese, cream cheese, and milk over medium-low heat. Stir occasionally until cheese mixture is mostly melted. Whisk until sauce is smooth, and remove from heat.

4. In a large bowl, combine potatoes, ham, soup, onions, sour cream, remaining ½ teaspoon salt, and pepper. Stir in cheese sauce and tomatoes. Spoon into prepared baking dish; sprinkle with remaining ¾ cup Gouda cheese and bacon.

Bake until heated through, 45 to 60

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