Is anyone looking for Thanksgiving recipes for next year yet?
Too soon? I don’t care, because I came home from the long holiday weekend brainstorming the menu for next year, and how we most definitely need a new potato dish. This year’s menu did include a cauliflower gratin which was excellent, and got my sister and I thinking—is gratin the way to go? Taking the lead from our president-elect, we too decided that we should make America gratin again*. And thus, here we are.
*Make America Gratin Again is 100% the work of Jenny Volvovski, owner of ALSO Design, designer of this site and a lot of other pretty things on the internet.
Now what makes a gratin a gratin, you ask? It basically means that something is sliced thin, topped with cheese, breadcrumbs, or the like, and then baked until the top is crispy and delicious. It usually involves a shallow baking dish of sorts. My new trick is to stack everything on a diagonal so every piece gets a bit of the brown edges instead of just the top layer. That, I think, is the key to a lovely gratin.
The other key is plenty of melty cheese. In this case, I decided to go for the trifecta—gruyere (classic gratin cheese), swiss, and goat cheese on top. The three mix together and complement the potatoes and carrots perfectly.
I’m naming gratins the dish of 2017. Now laugh through the tears everybody, we’ve got 4 more years to go.
- ⅔ cups heavy cream
- ⅔ cups chicken stock
- 1½ tablespoons fresh thyme sprigs
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- ½ pound large carrots, peeled, then sliced on the diagonal to ⅛ inch thickness on the mandoline
- 1 pound russet potatoes, peeled, then sliced to ⅛ inch thickness on the mandolin
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 shallots, minced
- ½ cup gruyere, shredded
- ½ cup swiss, shredded
- 2 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
- Preheat oven to 425F.
- In a large bowl, combine cream, stock, thyme, salt, and a healthy pinch of black pepper. Stir in carrot and potato slices, and let sit for 5 minutes to soak. You can choose to split mixture in half and add potatoes to one and carrots to the other, but I found it easy to pick through it after the fact.
- In a small bowl, mix together garlic and shallots. Set aside.
- In another small bowl, mix together gruyere and swiss cheese. Set aside.
- Generously grease the bottom of a 9 by 5 inch bread pan with butter. Pick up a small handful of potatoes and lay them in the bread pan with their edges on the diagonal. Next, layer a few pieces of carrot in the same manner. Sprinkle a bit of garlic and shallots on top, then a pinch of the cheese mixture. Repeat the process again, starting with potatoes, then carrots, then garlic/shallots, then cheese. Continue to work until all the vegetables have been used up and you've reached the other end of the bread pan. Pour about ½ of the remaining liquid from the potato/carrot bowl on top of the gratin. Top with any remaining gruyere/swiss cheese, then dollop goat cheese all over the top.
- Bake gratin for 45-60 minutes, until the top has browned and the vegetables are fully cooked through. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.