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Food: Potatoes Au Gratin

November 22, 2011

I love mashed potatoes, but I bought a mandolin a while back that’s been taunting me from under a layer of dust, so I thought I’d try something new for Thanksgiving this year.

Here’s what I learned: Potatoes Au Gratin would be a) a disaster and b) not worth the effort without said mandolin. The potatoes would be uneven, I’d get very annoyed halfway through cutting them, I’d probably be bleeding, and I’d just end up throwing everything into a pot to make mashed while I bandaged up my thumb. So, if you want to make this, buy a mandolin- mine only cost $10.

However, WITH the mandolin the whole process was pretty easy (even easier if you enlist someone to help you peel the potatoes) and incredibly tasty. This recipe, adapted from America’s Test Kitchen, was smooth and creamy without being disgustingly over-rich. You can even make it ahead a few hours and just throw it in the oven an hour before your turkey is done.

Potatoes Au Gratin:
1 1/4 cups sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1 1/2 cups Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
2 tsp cornstarch
6 russet potatoes, peeled and sliced 1/8 inch thick (thin setting on a mandolin)
3/4 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup chicken broth
juice from 1/2 lemon
salt and pepper

Pre-heat oven to 350. Toss cheese in a bowl with cornstarch until everything is evenly distributed. Layer half of the potatoes in your baking dish, then sprinkle with 1 cup of the cheese mixture, plus some salt and pepper. Top with rest of potatoes, more salt, and more pepper. Squeeze juice of 1/2 lemon on top. Combine cream and broth in a bowl, pour over potatoes. Top with remaining cheese mixture, and bake -uncovered- for 1 hour or until you can cut through with little resistance. Voila.

One Comment leave one →
  1. November 23, 2011 9:19 am

    I just noticed I never had a proper potatoes au gratin. Cafeteria food is an epic downer.

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