Potatoes Au Gratin are a traditional side dish at Easter, but they are a delicious side dish any time. These cheesy potatoes are gluten-free, because you won't need flour to make them creamy, just cream, cheese, and the starch from the potatoes.
What is Au Gratin?
According to Merrium-Webster, Au Gratin is a French cooking term which means “covered with breadcrumbs or gated cheese, or both, and browned. These Classic Stuffed Mushrooms are another example of a dish cooked Au Gratin, that one using breadcrumbs.
Although they are similar, Au Gratin and Scalloped Potatoes are two different dishes. Au Gratin potatoes have cheese, while scalloped potatoes do not. Check out this recipe for Sweet Potato Scallop for a delicious twist on the classic.
Choosing the right potato
Absolutely any potato will work for these cheesy potatoes. But, if you are keeping the dish classic, which means no flour, then, ideally, you will want the starchier potatoes, which are russets. Yukon Gold are a good second, but don't have as much starch as russets. The starch in the potatoes will help to thicken the cream as the dish bakes.
Which Cheese to Use
As with the choice of potato, any cheese will be delicious. However, my favourite is Gruyère, the fondue cheese. The reason for that is because that Gruyere melts up ultra creamy and has a richness that works well for potatoes. I also used aged cheddar to top the gratin, which adds a nice sharpness.
Slicing Your Potatoes
If you're using russet potatoes, they will need to be peeled. A thinner skinned potato, like a Yukon Gold, can be used unpeeled. The thinner that you slice the potatoes, the faster the dish will cook. I find that a 1/8 inch slice works well for allowing the potatoes to keep their shape, without an overly long baking time. A mandolin or a food processor with a slicing attachment make quick work of slicing.
How to Make Potatoes Au Gratin
Potatoes, cream, 2 cheeses, and onion are delicious in this simple, but classic dish that's always a hit with everyone at the table.
- 1 tbsp butter
- 3 lb russet potatoes peeled & sliced 1/8" thick
- 1 onion large, thinly sliced
- 1 cup whipping cream
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 2 cups Gruyere cheese grated
- 1 cup cheddar cheese grated
- 2 tbsp parsley chopped
Preheat oven to 350°
Butter a 12" cast iron skilled or baking dish.
stir the garlic into the whipping cream.
arrange 1/3 of the potatoes in the dish, overlapping them. layer 1/2 of the onion slices evenly over the potatoes. Pour 1/3 cup whipping cream over the layer, and spread 1/2 the Gruyere cheese.
Repeat the process in the step above.
Arrange the remaining potatoes evenly over the top, and pour over the last 1/3 cup whipping cream, pressing the potatoes down so they are submerged in the liquid. Arrange the cheddar cheese over the top.
Bake 1 hr 15 minutes, until potatoes are tender and top is starting to brown. Remove from oven and garnish with parsley.
Let stand 15 minutes before slicing and serving.
Because cheese is salty, I haven't added and salt to the recipe, but if you prefer to, sprinkle salt and pepper on each layer of potatoes.
Additions such as crumbled bacon, diced ham, mushrooms, or other veggies are delicious in this dish.