Friday, November 12, 2010
French Fridays with Dorie: Potato Gratin
I have a pretty nice food processor. I've gotten quite a bit of use out of it over the past year...soup, pie and cookie dough, hummus, ground nuts and some other things I can't think of. My food processor has some fancy attachments to grate cheese and slice and dice stuff but I've never used them. Today was my big chance to finally use the slicing attachment...to get nice uniform slices for my Potato Gratin. After a lot of fiddling around, reading through the instruction manual that I dug out of the depths of our catch all drawer and some more fiddling, I am sad to report I could not figure out the attachment set up. So if anyone knows how to set up the attachments for a Cuisinart 11 cup food processor please leave me a comment!
I broke down and sliced my potatoes in 1/8 inch thick rounds by hand. At least I tried my damnedest. Some were thicker, some were thinner. What can you do? Oh, I know! Buy a mandoline or figure out how to use your food processor. Hmmmm. Maybe Santa will bring me a mandoline...but if I am so lucky, I will have to hide it from my husband. He has an unnatural fear of a bad accident involving fingers and a very sharp blade. But that's not what we're here to discuss.
Let's get back to the potatoes. Potatoes are the ultimate blank canvas in cooking. So many options. Cheesy potatoes, fried potatoes, buttery baked potatoes, creamy mashed potatoes, potato salad, crispy potatoes, potato skins, hashbrowns, latkes, potato soup, potato tacos (yes, there is such a thing--and they are tasty), roasted potatoes....all delicious, including Potato Gratin, this week's French Fridays with Dorie recipe pick.
This recipe has just a few ingredients....heavy cream, garlic, salt, pepper, gruyere cheese and of course potatoes. You start by warming heavy cream with minced garlic and letting the garlic infuse into the cream. Meanwhile start peeling and slicing. Potatoes are layered in the pan, topped with salt and pepper and a few spoonfuls of garlicky cream....and repeat. I am guessing I had about 7 or 8 layers. Top it off with fresh grated gruyere cheese and bake at 350 for 45 minutes to 1 hour.
This was good. The potatoes drank in all that creamy garlic goodness and the browned gruyere cheese on top was a delicious accompaniment. Though it was good, solidly good, I was looking for another layer of flavor. Maybe a little bacon? Maybe a little cheese between the layers?
Along with the potatoes I made another recipe from Dorie Greenspan's cookbook, Around My French Table, Chicken Breasts Diable. Chicken in a dijon shallot wine sauce. Mmmmmm. Here's a preview. Will be posting more details about this dee-lish dish in the next day or two.
You can see what other French Fridays with Dorie cooks made this week. November is a mix it up month and you can make 1 of 4 different recipes which ever week you choose.