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Potato & Celery Root Gratin

By bungei, member

Posted: November 13th, 2011

A basic potato gratin can be customized by adding other root vegetables, meats, cheeses, and herbs.

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1-1/4 lb. Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and sliced into 1/8-inch thick rounds
1-1/4 lb. celery root, peeled and sliced 1/8-inch thick
2-1/2 cups half-and-half
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 Tbs. butter, oil, or bacon or pancetta fat
2 onions, sm, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 oz. grated aged Gouda
3 oz. crumbled mild blue cheese
2 to 3 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
1 to 2 Tbs. chopped fresh parsley
1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs
2 Tbs. melted unsalted butter
1/4 cup finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 400 degrees F. Butter or oil a 3-quart gratin dish; set aside.

Put the potatoes, celery root, half-and-half, 1/2 tsp. salt, and a few grinds of pepper in a 12-inch skillet. Simmer, partially covered, over medium to medium-low heat, stirring occasionally and gently with a rubber spatula until the potatoes are barely tender when pierced with a fork or skewer, 8 to 12 minutes.

In a medium skillet, heat butter or oil over medium-high heat and saute garlic and onion until tender, fragrant, and lightly browned. Season to taste with fresh thyme, salt and pepper. Set aside.

TOPPING:Combine bread crumbs, melted butter and a bit of chopped parsley. Add ~1/4 cup grated cheese(gouda, parmesan, asiago)Set aside.

Using a slotted spoon, transfer ~1/3 of the potato mixture to the prepared gratin dish, spreading it evenly. Layer on half the onion mixture, aged Gouda, blue cheese, chopped fresh thyme, chopped fresh parsley, and freshly grated nutmeg. Repeat another layer of potatoes and second half of onion and cheeses. Top with the remaining potato mixture spreading it evenly, and pour over any liquid remaining in the pan.

Evenly scatter the topping mixture over the potatoes. Bake the gratin until it's bubbly, the top is brown, and the potatoes are completely tender when poked with a fork or a skewer, 25 to 30 minutes. Let the gratin sit for at least 10 and up to 30 minutes before serving so the liquid is fully absorbed and the layers are cohesive.

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