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Mashed Potato Casserole

Fourth Grade Mains Activities: Mashed Potato Casserole

Potatoes are as hearty as they are delicious. No wonder they are a staple so many dishes! The next time you want to whip up potatoes (or use up leftovers), bond with your child over a delicious dish with potatoes as the focal point.

What You Need:

  • 1 gallon water
  • 1 ½ pounds Russet baking potatoes
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 2 ½ cups milk
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ground black pepper 
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • ½ tablespoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup shortening
  • ¼ cup, plus 2 tablespoons milk
  • Casserole dish
  • Whisk
  • Saucepan
  • Mixing bowl
  • Wooden spoon
  • Large pot
  • Vegetable peeler
  • Knife
  • Cutting board
  • Hot pads
  • Strainer
  • Potato masher

What You Do:

  1. Help your child scrub the baking potatoes under warm water to remove any excess dirt.
  2. Then, take over duties and peel each of the potatoes using the vegetable peeler.
  3. Next, have your child set the cutting board out on a clean, flat surface.
  4. Help your child dice each potato into even, bite sized pieces.
  5. Next, let her place the large pot on the stove.
  6. Help her carefully pour the gallon of water into the large pot.
  7. Show your child how to turn the heat on the stove to high.
  8. Allow the water to come to a full, rolling boil.
  9. Help your child carefully add the potatoes to the pot of boiling water.
  10. Cook for 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender.
  11. Once the potatoes are done cooking, assist your child in draining the potatoes using the strainer.
  12. Help your child very carefully return the drained potatoes to the pot.
  13. Then, have her add both the heavy cream and the butter to the pot.
  14. Help her mash the potatoes, cream and butter together using the potato masher.
  15. Once the potatoes are mashed, set them to the side. Now it’s time to work on the gravy for the casserole!
  16. Ask your child to place the saucepan on the stove.
  17. Show your child how to turn the heat to medium.
  18. Allow her to carefully add the butter to the pan.
  19. Let the butter melt completely.
  20. Show your child how to use the whisk to whisk the all purpose flour into the melted butter. Be sure to keep stirring.
  21. Once the color of the flour turns blonde and the smell is somewhat nutty, let your child very slowly drizzle the milk into the pan as you continue whisking.
  22. Allow the mixture to come to a boil, stirring constantly.
  23. Once the mixture is boiling, let your child very carefully pour the black pepper into the pan.
  24. Still handling duties, stir the pan briefly to blend the ingredients.
  25. Help your child very carefully remove the pan from the heat and set to the side. It’s now time to work on the biscuit mix!
  26. Help your child preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
  27. Let her put the all purpose flour, baking powder and salt into the mixing bowl.
  28. Then, help her stir the ingredients inside the mixing bowl using the wooden spoon.
  29. Next, have her place the shortening into the dry ingredients.
  30. Help your child “cut” the shortening into the dry ingredients using clean fingers. This basically means she should rub the shortening into the flour using her fingertips, kind of like giving a back massage.
  31. Ask your child thoroughly wash her hands.
  32. Then, help her pour the milk into the mixing bowl.
  33. Using the wooden spoon, let your child stir the contents of the mixing bowl until they come together.
  34. Set the bowl to the side. Now it’s time to assemble the whole casserole!
  35. Help your child spread the mashed potatoes into the bottom of the casserole dish.
  36. Then, let her pour the gravy over the top of the potatoes.
  37. Finally, help her distribute the biscuit mix over the gravy, in as even a layer as possible.
  38. Place the casserole on the center rack of your preheated oven.
  39. Bake for 10 minutes, or until the biscuit mix is golden brown.
  40. Using the hot pads, assist your child in carefully removing the casserole from the oven.
  41. Allow the casserole to cool briefly before serving.
Updated on Nov 19, 2013
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See more activities in: Fourth Grade, Mains
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