Gratins have gotten a bit of a bad reputation in the US.
This could be because they usually are drowned in heavy cream, have lots of butter and way too much cheese.
Not that there’s anything wrong with that – if you can limit your serving size to a teaspoon and don’t want to taste the vegetables.
We prefer a more balanced dish.
And I long ago realized that a bit of chicken stock to replace the cream and a strong cheese rather than bland makes a wonderful, reasonable gratin that I can enjoy without an extra workout the next day.
This would be perfect with leftovers from turkey dinner. It’s a very autumnal dish with the butternut squash and fresh sage.
I use a mandolin to slice the potatoes and squash but a sharp knife will work as well. They shouldn’t be ‘paper thin’ but close.
Potato and Butternut Squash Gratin
Total Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes
- 2 medium potatoes (12oz, 360gr), thinly sliced
- 12oz (360gr) butternut squash, the ‘neck’ end
- 1 large red onion, thinly sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 8 – 12 fresh sage leaves
- 1 tbs olive oil
- 3oz (90gr) Gruyère, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup (2oz, 60ml) chicken stock
- pinch of nutmeg
- Heat oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add onions, garlic and sauté until tender, 7 – 10 minutes
- Remove from heat and set aside.
- In a baking dish just large enough to hold ingredients lay 1/2 of the potatoes, 1/2 of the squash, all of the sautéed onions and all of the sage leaves. Finish with the remaining potatoes topped with the remaining squash.
- Sprinkle the nutmeg over the top.
- Pour the stock over all, cover with foil and bake at 400F (200C) for 45 minutes.
- Remove from oven and remove foil
- Top with cheese.
- Return to oven and bake, uncovered, for 15 minutes longer..
- Remove, let rest 5 minutes, then serve.
Note: You could also bake longer in a slower oven – 90 minutes at 350F (180C)
Speaking of Turkey Day, er, I mean Thanksgiving….
We haven’t celebrated Thanksgiving since we left Andorra – and there it was the day of the ‘End-of-Season’ tournament for our golfing group…. More exercise and no naps.
Turkeys don’t start showing up in the supermarkets here until much closer to Christmas and cranberries have only made a recent appearance. Since I can’t get the proper food, family isn’t going to pop over for turkey dinner and the locals don’t really understand the holiday (and they work), we’ve gotten into the habit of skipping it altogether.
I do miss the leftovers, though… (The French also don’t understand the concept of leftovers…. Why would one make too much food only to have to eat the same thing again the next day?)
This would be great with leftovers – if you should be so lucky.