With Easter just less than a month away, I had to share one of my favorite side dishes for holidays and special occasions. This leek and potato gratin is something that I learned to make a few years ago and haven’t stopped since. Our family absolutely loves it! It goes perfectly with a beautiful oven roast- whether it’s ham, turkey or chicken, you can’t go wrong!
Leeks are something I had never cooked with prior to working at Sur La Table. Now they’re something look forward to buying and using every spring! They’re like a giant green onion, only less pungent. And they just happen to work perfectly in this dish.
You’ll need just one big one… and just the white/light green part. To clean it, slice the leek down to the root, then rotate it so that the cut is even with your cutting board and cut the leek again. That will leave you with 4 even sections. Now that the leek is nice and open you can run it under cold water to remove an grit or dirt that’s trapped deep down in there.
Sauté the sliced leek in butter along with a little garlic until tender and translucent. Add some cream, milk, salt, pepper and paprika and bring to a simmer. Add the thinly sliced potatoes (I usually use about 3 large Russet potatoes and find that using a mandolin is not only super quick but creates perfectly even slices) and allow them to cook without stirring them for about 5 minutes, then add the fresh thyme. Layer the gratin by working in thirds. ⅓ of the potatoes, ⅓ of the cheese, ⅓ of the cream mixture. When it’s layered pop it into the oven and bake for 45-55 minutes or until the potatoes are tender and the top is crust and brown. Garnish with a few pinches of paprika and chopped chives.
This creamy, cheesy flavorful gratin will be gone in seconds! It’s a recipe that you’re family will be begging you to make!
- 2 tbsp. butter
- 1 large leek, thinly sliced (white and light green parts only)
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- ½ c. heavy cream
- ¾ c. whole milk
- 1½ tsp. salt
- ¼ tsp. black pepper
- ¼ tsp. paprika
- 3 large Russet potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1½ tsp. fresh thyme
- ½ c. cheddar cheese, grated
- ¼ c. parmesan cheese, shaved
- chopped chives
- pinch or two of paprika
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly butter a 9" pie dish, 9x9" square baking pan, or a medium size gratin dish, set aside.
- In a large non-stick skillet over medium heat, melt butter, then add leeks. Saute until soft and tender, then add garlic and cook until fragrant (taking care to not let either brown). Add cream, whole milk, salt, pepper and paprika. Bring mixture to a simmer then add the sliced potatoes into the mixture. Allow the potatoes to cook for 5 minutes, then stir in thyme. Combine the cheese in a small bowl.
- Transfer ⅓ of the potato slices to the prepared baking dish, sprinkle with ⅓ of the cheese mixture and repeat, pouring some of the cream mixture in between each layer (over the cheese). Place in oven and bake for 45-55 minutes or until the potatoes are tender and the top is golden brown. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 15 minutes before garnishing with a pinch or two of paprika and chopped chives.
Recipe source: Life Made Simple