This rich, creamy gratin gets a note of smokiness from the bacon between the layers of tender potatoes. Create your own potato gratin with the Recipe Maker.
Put the potatoes, cream , 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, cook the bacon until browned and fully cooked. Set aside to cool, reserving 2 Tbs. of the fat in the skillet. Heat the reserved fat over medium-high heat and sauté leeks until tender, fragrant, and lightly browned. Season to taste with salt and pepper. When the bacon is cool, crumble it into small pieces.
Using a slotted spoon, transfer half the potatoes to the prepared gratin dish, spreading them evenly. Layer on the leeks, bacon, Gruyère, theyme, and nutmeg. Top with the remaining potatoes spreading them evenly, and pour over any liquid remaining in the pan.
In a small bowl, combine the breadcrumbs, Parmigiano-Reggiano, and melted butter.
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.
We made this as a side dish for the Christmas entrée Brined Honor Guard Rack of Pork. The only thing we did differently was sprinkle a light layer of sweet paprika over the top of the bread crumb mixture. EVERYONE marveled at how good the gratin was!
This dish is heavenly good. Quite possibly the finest potato "casserole" I've ever made. Don't skimp on ingredients (gruyere means gruyere, heavy creme means heavy creme) and follow directions for what will become an heirloom classic. I used panko crumbs on top for the most delightful crunch. 5 Stars!
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