06 Sep Gratin Dauphinois
Gratin Dauphinois is a rich and filling dish from the Dauphine region of south eastern France. Authentically, it is made of sliced raw potatoes cooked in fresh cream.
This is an excellent recipe, very easy to make, impressive to serve and a very good way to enjoy fresh cream. It may be made ahead of time and served some hours later at room temperature or it may be reheated a day or so later.
The true charm of the dish is best appreciated when it is presented entirely on its own, as a first course preceding grilled or plain roasted meat or poultry, baked fish or cold ham.
The choice of cooking dish is important – an earthenware dish is ideal. I also use a decorative shallow metal pan. Most importantly – the dish you cook it in is the dish it is to be served from at the table.
1200 g Dutch Cream, or other potatoes that hold their shape when cooked. 750 mls Fresh cream
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 200C:
Prepare the potatoes:
Peel and slice the potatoes, no thicker than a 20c coin – using a mandolin makes this an easy matter.
Rinse the potatoes in cold water, and dry them well on a clean tea towel
Gently heat the cream in a small pan.
Add a bay leaf or two and a clove of peeled garlic
Rub an earthenware dish with butter to grease it well
Arrange the potato slices in the dish – a layer at a time:
Season each layer with salt and pepper before adding the next layer.
If you like – try and maintain an even cylindrical pattern in the arrangement of the potatoes, if using a rectangle or square dish – lines of potatoes look good too.
Pour the heated cream over the potatoes until just barely covering them
Place a few knobs of butter on top of the potatoes.
Grate a little nutmeg on top.
Place the gratin in the oven and cook for about 1 hour.
Check the potatoes are not burning after about 20 minutes:
Turning the pan will ensure even colouring of the potatoes.
You need to cook for up to 1 hour.
The dish is ready when the potatoes are golden on top and you can cut into them easily with a knife.
Allow the potatoes to rest for about 20 minutes before serving
Serve from the dish they were cooked in, with the dish placed in the centre of the table, allow everyone to help themselves.
David, Elizabeth : French Provincial Cooking
Active: 20 Minutes
Cook: 60 Minutes
Rest: 20 Minutes
European : Western : French
Servings: 6 – 8