Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Real potatoes au gratin

I've searched high and low for an elegant and simple recipe for potatoes au gratin. I found all kinds of strange variations including ingredients like cream of mushroom soup and a pound of shredded cheddar and a topping of corn flakes. While I'm sure all of these are delicious, they were not what I was searching for. I did not want an overly heavy, greasy mess that overshadowed the potato and possibly even the main course.

Finally I found what I was looking for in a recipe from my friend's sister. This is a traditional recipe for what the French call pommes de terre dauphinois. I love the humble spud and it doesn't need a lot of over the top treatment to be delicious. This recipe is perfection for the potato. Someday I am going to try to grow my own potatoes in a tire. If anyone has done this, let me know how it works.

Gratin Potatoes:
makes 8 servings

3 large Yukon Gold Potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
1 qt. whipping cream
2 minced garlic cloves
2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper

Layer potato slices in a buttered 13 x 9 baking dish. Stir together cream and remaining ingredients, pour mixture over potatoes. Bake at 400 degrees for 50 minutes or until potatoes are tender and mixture is bubbly and golden. Let stand 15 minutes before serving.

If you have a healthy heart, you may as well gild the lily and dot the top of the potatoes with some butter. YUM!


Anonymous said...

recipe looks lovely and came up when I was searching for potatoes au gratin, but I just have to say that au gratin refers to with cheese, can't be gratin without it!

Anonymous said...

growing potatoes in a tire is easy. Potatoes don't need fancy care or fancy soil. Start potatoes in a tire and when the plant gets about 6 or so inches tall pile on another tire and more dirt. You can do this until you have a tower about feet high. Potaotes just can't grow into the sunlight. They have to be covered until you harvest them or they can become poisonous.
When you are ready to harvest just knock over the tower.

Anonymous said...

oops...a tower can get up to about 5 feet high

Anonymous said...

I believe this would be a tasty Scalloped potato recipe, not a true gratin.
As such, it looks simple and elegant.

Anonymous said...

Gratin actually refers to the browning process- this is often done with cheese and bread crums because they brown so nicely. This is not necesary however as the cream itself will also bring a wonder golden crust. This is a classic country french dish with the just the cream, garlic and seasoning. I personally add some butter and whipp the cream ( just lightly not to thick) to add a little air. The Yukon Gold is also just a wonderful potato to use!

Anonymous said...

I love this receipe. No au gratin does not mean with cheese, sorry. I add fresh rosemary to the cream and garlic and simmer on the stove for 30 minutes and strain before I pour over the sliced potatoes. My family and friends rave about this dish. Thanks for sharing your receipe.

Tazzy Woman said...

mmmm, I am going to try this for our dinner tonight! It is Christmas in Australia, but the weather in Tasmania is blowy and chily today, so this potatoe recipe looks perfect.

Happy Christmas, and a wonderful, peaceful New Year to all of you!

Love the Durham area, btw!

USA expat who is slightly homesick!

Tazzy Woman said...

Well, I am back and have to say that these potatoes were fantastic. The garlic salt and pepper more than make up for the lack of cheese. The flavour is subtle and simply delicious. These disappeared in a flash!

I have just shared this recipe with a friend of mine, who will cook them tonight. Maybe I will go to her place for dinner!