Pineapple Au Gratin – A Southern Classic

 

Pineapple Au Gratin

Pineapple Au Gratin is a wonderful contrast in flavors – the natural sweetness of the pineapple with the tanginess of sharp Cheddar cheese and Ritz cracker crumbs give this dish a unique flavor profile. This dish is often found in attendance at church socials, pot-luck suppers and family gatherings in the South.


Pineapple Au Gratin is a delicious side dish that goes well with meat or poultry main dishes. It can be served warm or at room temperature. This particular version of this recipe is from Helene Ramsey, who was a Home Economics teacher in my hometown and later in life became a good friend of my mother’s – after they were both widows.

Mrs. Ramsey’s recipe for Pineapple Au Gratin was published in the Viewmont Baptist Church 60th Anniversary Cookbook that was published in 1995. If I had to give up all of my cookbooks except one – this is the one that I would choose to keep. The recipes are for foods familiar to me since childhood and the names of the many recipe contributors also evoke pleasant memories. Viewmont Baptist Church is the church I attended while I was growing up and it was special to me in my early life. By the way, my father’s Cornbread Dressing recipe is in this cookbook, and he was so proud to have his recipe included in it. I plan to share his recipe with you this fall, in anticipation of Thanksgiving turkey!

The Recipe

Pineapple Au Gratin
Serves 6
An excellent side dish containing pineapple chunks, Cheddar cheese and Ritz cracker crumbs.
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Ingredients
  1. 2 (20-ounce) cans Pineapple Chunks, drained
  2. 2/3 cup Sugar
  3. 6 tablespoons All-Purpose Flour
  4. 2 cups sharp Cheddar Cheese, grated
  5. 1 cup Ritz Cracker Crumbs
  6. 1/2 cup Butter, melted
Instructions
  1. Mix together pineapple, sugar, flour and cheese.
  2. Place mixture in a greased 8-inch square baking pan or 1 1/2-quart casserole dish.
  3. Cover top with cracker crumbs.
  4. Drizzle with melted butter.
  5. Bake at 350 degrees F. for 25-35 minutes, until lightly browned.
Notes
  1. This side dish goes well with meat or poultry main dishes.
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The Methodology

Pineapple Au Gratin is quick and easy to prepare. First, the drained pineapple chunks are combined with sugar, flour, and grated Cheddar cheese and placed into a greased 8-inch square baking dish or 1 1/2-quart casserole dish.

The top of the casserole is covered with Ritz cracker crumbs.

Melted butter is drizzled over the top of the Ritz crumbs.

Pineapple Au Gratin is baked at 350°F. for 25-35 minutes or until top is lightly browned.

Parting Comments

Mrs. Ramsey’s recipe originally called for 1 cup sugar but I thought that was too sweet so I decreased the sugar to 2/3 cup.

I can’t help but think of my youngest brother who as a youngster picked up a menu at a restaurant and read out loud “Potatoes A U gratin” to which we all howled in laughter.  Whenever I see Au Gratin, I always chuckle remembering this family moment.

Tasty Tip: Remember the pineapple juice that was drained from the pineapple chunks in the above recipe? I like to use the leftover pineapple juice to sweeten my iced tea – it’s really good! 

Try Pineapple A U Gratin real soon! 

Remember to Savor the Flavor!

Janet

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