The ham in this gratin is optional. If you do use it, however, taste it first. If it’s very salty, use a bit less ham and be careful with the added salt.
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Cover the dish loosely with foil and bake in the hot oven until the potatoes start to get tender, about 30 minutes. Remove the foil and continue baking, basting occasionally with the liquid in the dish, until the potatoes and leeks are very tender when pierced with a knife and a golden crust forms on top, another 30 to 45 minutes. Let cool for about 15 minutes before serving.
Absolutely excellent! I made this for company, and everyone loved it. Because I'm a vegetarian I left the ham out, but I am getting ready to make it for my husband's office party and I will try it with the ham. I have no doubt it will be absolutely wonderful. I also added portobello and cremini mushrooms since I am such a fan of these and they added the perfect touch. The dish was to die for, and everyone wanted the recipe!!!
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