Potatoes gratin Dauphinois the best recipe

This classic French potato gratin dish is world famous, and rightly so! I am very happy to have this as a main meal, with just some crusty bread baguette and a nice roast lamb. I have heard that this famous dish was created as a way of encouraging the “Dauphin” (the young prince destined to become King Henri II), to eat up his vegetables, hence the name! Maybe – it is certainly just as popular with children, as it is with adults. Try to slice the potatoes as thinly as possible for the best results. A wonderful accompaniment for all sorts of roast meats, stews, casseroles and poultry

Scalloped potatoes in an old blue enamel bowl.  Shallow depth of field.

1Kg 500g potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced (such as Desiree, Golden Wonder, Maris Piper, Idaho or King Edward)

6 ounces gruyere cheese, grated

3/4 pint double cream

salt

fresh ground black pepper

2 -4 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed

2 sprigs fresh thyme

1 ounce butter

cheese, for topping (optional)

Directions:

1 Preheat the oven to 300F/150C/gas mark 2.

2 Take a heavy-bottomed dish or an ovenproof gratin dish (a Le Creuset is ideal – the potatoes tend not to catch), and grease it will with some of the butter.

3 Layer the potato slices in the dish, slightly overlapping each other, seasoning lightly with the salt and pepper, and sprinkling a liberal amount of cheese on each layer.

4 Sprinkle cheese on the top of the last layer.

5 Put the double cream, garlic and sprigs of thyme in a pan and bring to them gently to the boil, then remove the thyme and pour hot cream over the potatoes.

6 Dot the top of the gratin with the remaining butter and some extra cheese if you wish, and bake for about 1 hr to 1 1/2 hrs, or until the potatoes are soft, and the top is crispy and golden brown.

7 Serve bubbling hot as a main meal or as an accompaniment.

Bertrand Munier

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