Friday, 3 April 2009

Tyler's Creamy Parmesan Potato Gratin

"A diet that consists predominantly of rice leads to the use of opium, just as a diet that consists predominantly of potatoes leads to the use of liquor."
Friedrich Nietzsche

Now, I am not sure if he is telling me to eat more or less potatoes, I will assume more. Especially when they are done up so lovingly with cream and cheese and baked until brown and bubbly. Winter is ebbing away here, I have to get the comfort food in while I still can!

This simple dish of creamy scalloped potatoes went beautifully with some pan fried sole and medallions of zucchini. A couple of beers and a squeeze of orange and all is right with the world once again. Hmm, maybe Nietzsche was right about the potatoes.

Creamy Parmesan Potato Gratin
Tyler Florence, Dinner at My Place
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 sprig fresh thyme
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/8-inch thick slices
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup grated Parmesan, plus more for broiling

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
In a saucepan, heat up the cream with a sprig of thyme, chopped garlic and nutmeg.
While cream is heating up, butter a casserole dish. Place a layer of potato in an overlapping pattern and season with salt and pepper. Remove cream from heat, then pour a little over the potatoes. Top with some grated Parmesan. Make 2 more layers. Bake, uncovered, for 45 minutes. Sprinkle some more Parmesan and broil until cheese browns, about 5 minutes.

A great meal for a tired hubby to come home to after a long commute. Like a dressed up version of fish and chips.
*I tend to free-hand while savoury cooking, you can generally assume that I am generous with the seasonings, in this case - especially the cheese!
*I like a thin cut potato for a dish like this, I use my big mouth food processor to slice it. It makes for a crispier potato and more even cooking. I also leave the skin on for colour.
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