Gratin Dauphinois is one of the most delicious of French recipes and yet it is so very simple in terms of the ingredients and the making of this gorgeous dish.
It is basically a dish made with the humble potato and with the addition of cream and garlic it is turned into a truly magnificent French dish that can be served as a side dish or just on its own when the mood takes you.
However, if you have never tasted this dish – beware, it is addictive! It is one of our favourite of French dishes and yet as I say it is so simple and very inexpensive to make.
Potatoes are one of our little friends in the kitchen - they are inexpensive - even more so it you are able to grow your own and yet they make the most wonderful dishes from frites (chips to most of us) to roast potatoes, sauté potatoes, potato nests and in this instance, the beautiful gratin dauphinois.
2kg waxy potatoes such as Desirée
1 litre of cream
Salt and pepper
3 cloves of garlic
1. Preheat the oven to 160°C (325°F/Gas3)
2. Grease a large gratin dish with butter
3. Chop the garlic cloves into small pieces
4. Peel and slice the potatoes thinly – a mandolin is excellent for this purpose see picture below of thinly sliced potatoes with the French mandolin – always ensure you use the guard.
5. Sprinkle the garlic pieces over the bottom of the dish.
6. Layer the potatoes over the dish and sprinkle each layer with salt and pepper.
7. Continue layering them until you have used all the potato slices.
8. Sprinkle with nutmeg.
9. Pour in the cream.
10. Place your gratin dish in the oven and bake for about an hour uncovered until it is golden brown and crispy on the top.
Wait for the most wonderful aroma during the last half hour or so coming from your kitchen!
Serve with your chosen meat such as ham or sausage, or with a green salad. Its good on its own too when you feel in the need of comfort eating – especially with a glass of wine and some crusty French bread.