"This is the simplest way I know to make a potato gratin. Simmering the vegetables in the milk precooks them somewhat, shortening time in the oven and flavoring the milk, as well. You can easily vary this gratin by substituting some of the potatoes with other root vegetables, such as celery root, turnips, rutabagas, or parsnips. Yukon golds make a beautiful golden gratin, but I also like russets, and sometimes I mix varieties. There will be some leftover gratin, which is always welcome reheated the next day for a simple lunch served with a tossed salad." –Deborah Madison
4 cups 2% reduced-fat milk
2 cups thinly sliced leek (about 2 large)
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 pounds baking potato, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
2 thyme sprigs
1 bay leaf
1 garlic clove, minced
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Gruyère cheese
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 375°.
Place milk, leek, salt, pepper, potato, thyme, bay leaf, and garlic in a Dutch oven; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Discard thyme and bay leaf.
Spoon half of the potato mixture into a 13 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup cheese. Top with remaining potato mixture and remaining 1/2 cup cheese. Bake at 375° for 1 hour or until golden brown. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.
basically followed recipe. using a tip from another CL gratin recipe, made slurry of 1tbs flour/2tbs milk and added to the simmering liquid just before we transferred the potatoes to the baking dish. let rest for about 10min after removing from oven. not watery, not creamy but good. served with steak & CL's apple-brussels sprout salad.
I have made this recipe several times and it's always a winner! A few tips: use whatever soft cheese you like (I usually use a mix of Havarti and Smoked Moz or Smoked Provalone - gives it great cream and texture), also I found you only need 3.5 cups milk (watch your pan as the milk can burn easily to the bottom while on the stove top) and usually you only need 3/4 of a cup of the liquid at transfer to the casserole to bake; bake time is only about 40 minutes and then to get the top nice and golden brown, throw the casserole dish under the broiler on high for ~2-4 minutes (pretty much just keep your eye on it for a few minutes and remove when it's bubbly and browned), finally, I usually only need to use 1 leek (as when they are in season, they are extra large). Very impressive dish that's homey, tasty and great for a crowd. Don't worry if it's a little thin on the sauce after removing rom the oven, the flavors don't suffer; just use a slotted spatula to serve and Enjoy!