Serves 6 as a side The secret to making potato gratin is to cut the potatoes very thinly and evenly using the slicer attachment of a food processor or a mandolin. The gratin should be cooked until catching and caramelised at the edges, so judge readiness by how it looks, not by cooking time. And choose a baking dish in which the potato mixture sits about 5–6cm deep before cooking. Although, theoretically, you could make this dish with any variety of firm waxy potato, desirees are the best. This recipe is one I copied, uncredited, into my handwritten cookbook 15 to 20 years ago (judging from the recipes surrounding it). To the now forgotten author, my apologies, and thank you — this recipe is one I go back to again and again.
1kg desiree potatoes, peeled, very thinly sliced (no more than 2mm thick) 2 cups full-cream milk ½ cup pure cream 100g gruyere, grated Preheat oven to 175°C. Grease a deep, 10-cup capacity baking dish. Place potato, milk and cream in a large bowl. Using your hands, gently mix until well combined. Season generously with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Layer potato slices and half of gruyere in prepared baking dish. Pour over remaining milk mixture. Top potato mixture with remaining gruyere. Bake for 50 minutes or until potato is tender, and cheese is golden and bubbling.
“It seems that every year we grow more potatoes, but never are there enough.”