Tag: potato gratin

Potato and Endive Gratin with Chèvre and Thyme

Potato and Endive Gratin with Chèvre

A gratin has the same effect on me as pizza or lasagna, I just want to cuddle up on the sofa and get cosy. This dish spreads such a beautiful aroma of baked cheese and herbs through my flat, it instantly relaxes me. Sometimes I just sit in front of the glass oven door, enjoying the scene of bubbling cream and cheese that turns from an unspectacular pale white to a landscape of golden brown peaks. They look like tiny volcanos with dark tips ready to burst. It’s just a gratin but when you look at it long enough it carries you away!

I don’t remember how many different potato gratin recipes I have tried out in my kitchen, there were so many. I shared the ones with dried porcini, black pudding, apples or parsnips and today there will be a new addition to the selection: Potato and endive gratin with chèvre and thyme! The combination is great, quite strong with sweet, bitter, milky and woody flavours. I wanted a quick dish, so I boiled the potatoes and sautéed the endives before I baked them with cream and milk in the oven. You could easily come up with some variations and use raclette or blue cheese instead of the chèvre, or add some slices of pears or apples, mix in some chopped rosemary or whatever comes to mind to suit your cosy dinner.

Potato and Endive Gratin with Chèvre

 

Potato and Endive Gratin with Chèvre

 Potato and Endive Gratin with Chèvre and Thyme

For 3 – 4 people you need

potatoes, boiled, peeled and sliced, 700g / 1.5 pounds
endives, cut in half, 4
heavy cream 100ml / 3.5 ounces
milk 60ml / 2 ounces
freshly grated nutmeg
salt 1 teaspoon
pepper
chèvre 125g / 4.5 ounces
thyme, the leaves of a small bunch
olive oil
butter 2 teaspoons

Set the oven to 200°C / 390°F and butter a round 28cm / 11″ gratin form or baking dish.

In a pan, heat a splash of olive oil and butter and sauté the endives for 2 minutes on each side on medium-high. Season with salt and pepper.

Whisk the cream and milk and season with salt, pepper and nutmeg. Arrange the potatoes and endives in the buttered dish and pour the cream and milk mixture over the vegetables. Sprinkle with chèvre and thyme and bake for 18 minutes. Turn the oven down to 160°C / 320°F and bake for another 5 minutes or until golden brown. Let the gratin cool for a few minutes before serving and season with pepper to taste.

Potato and Endive Gratin with Chèvre

 

Potato and Endive Gratin with Chèvre

 

Potato and Endive Gratin with Chèvre

 

Potato and Endive Gratin with Chèvre

Potato, Apple and Black Pudding Gratin

Potato, Apple and Black Pudding Gratin

Golden potatoes, apples and onions roasted together make a wonderfully sweet and fruity gratin but you can top that by spreading a few slices of black pudding (or German Blutwurst) over the fruit and vegetables. Sprinkle this oven beauty with fresh thyme and you’ll be rewarded with the most aromatic winter gratin!

Black pudding has a difficult image – unfortunately! Although the taste is often enjoyed, I know quite a few who have a problem with the fact that the sausage gets its dark red colour from blood. It’s one of the oldest sausages which was highly appreciated by the Romans and it also got mentioned in Homer’s Odyssey: “As when a man beside a great fire has filled a sausage with fat and blood and turns it this way and that and is very eager to get it quickly roasted .” I love its sweet and aromatic taste and soft texture. I often fry slices of Blutwurst in butter for just a few minutes and eat them with mashed potatoes, fried onions and apples. This is the German classic called Himmel und Ääd, meaning Heaven and Earth, it’s very popular in the Rhineland area where I come from. I mentioned this great combination of fruits from the soil and the trees when I wrote about my parsnip and pear soup.

For my gratin, I layered slices of boiled potatoes, apples and onions and put the sausage on top. You could also tuck them in between the vegetables but then you would miss out on their almost caramelized texture. After 30 minutes in the oven, the blood pudding turned into crunchy bites which were still soft inside, it was so good!

Potato, Apple and Black Pudding Gratin

 

Potato, Apple and Black Pudding Gratin

 Potato, Apple and Black Pudding Gratin 

For 2 as a main or 4 as a side dish you need

potatoes, peeled, boiled and sliced, 650g / 1.5 pounds
large onion, cut in half and sliced thinly, 1
large sour apple, peeled, cored, quartered and sliced, 1
black pudding, peeled and cut into 0.5cm / 1/4″ slices, 200g / 7 ounces
olive oil
sea salt and pepper
fresh thyme, a small handful

Set the oven to 200°C / 390°F (I used the Rotitherm roasting setting) and brush the bottom of a baking dish (around 28 x 20cm / 11 x 8″) with olive oil.

Layer the potatoes, apples and onions in the dish. Sprinkle with a splash of olive oil, salt and pepper and put the sausage and thyme on top. Cook in the oven for about 30 minutes or until golden brown. Check after 20 minutes, if the sausage gets too dark, put it under the potatoes.

Potato, Apple and Black Pudding Gratin

 

Potato, Apple and Black Pudding Gratin