Let me just lay on the line that it’s not easy to get an attractive picture of this dish. I’ve tried on about three different occasions. Hopefully you can see the beauty that I see in this bubbling, rich, cheese-crusty potato gratin.
I made this for our family’s Easter dinner at the weekend, hoping it would go well with ham. Duh – it did. Two and a half pounds of scalloped potatoes baked in a bubbling warm mix of cream, milk, and nutmeg with Gruyere cheese sprinkled on top. It’s practically ham’s best friend.
This isn’t as thick and cheesy as you might guess – the cheese certainly gets gooey but the cream sauce stays pretty thin and provides a great gravy substitute for pouring on top of your ham. The perfect bite consists of a good bit of that charred, cheesy crust and a healthy spoonful of creamy sauce.
It’s over-the-top rich and whenever I make it I eat far more than advisable. Definitely stretchy pants material.
Rich and Cheesy Potato Gratin
adapted from Martha Stewart
- 2 1/2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes
- 1 garlic clove, halved
- 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
- 1 cup milk
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1.5 tsp salt
- Freshly ground pepper
- 3 ounces Gruyere cheese, grated (1 cup)
- Preheat oven to 375F. Peel potatoes and place in a bowl of water to prevent discolouring. Rub the inside of a 9-by-12-inch oval baking dish with cut sides of garlic. Heat cream, milk, nutmeg, and salt in a saucepan over medium heat until bubbles form around edge. Season with pepper and remove from the heat.
- Meanwhile, slice potatoes 1/8 inch thick and transfer to a bowl. Pour warm cream mixture on top and mix well, using your hands to separate and coat potatoes, and transfer to prepared dish. Gently push potatoes down, and pour cream mixture from bowl over top. Sprinkle liberally with Gruyere. Bake (with a baking sheet placed on the rack below to catch drips) until the potatoes are fork tender and the top is bubbling and brown, about 1 hour and 15 minutes.