So when I made roasted red potatoes to go along with my Unceremonious Steak with Balsamic Vinegar, I was left with two hefty ones at the bottom of the bag. So I made a gratin! I've only maybe made a gratin once before ever, so I used Joy of Cooking as my guide, but monkeyed around with the amounts. This made enough for two as a good sized side dish, but could probably also serve three if you had a heavier main course.
This was creamy and delicious. It would also have been great with gruyere or a more kick-ass cheese, but all I had was Parmesan, which was still pretty darn tasty. All it lacked was salt, so I've modified the recipe to include a more daring salting approach than my initial attempt. It's always hard halving and cutting back recipes. Some flavors always seem to get lost!
Red Potatoes Au Gratin
2 large red potatoes, washed (About 1 lb? I'm really not sure. These were big red potatoes though.)
1 TBS butter, softened
1 cup milk, half-n-half, or light cream (I used half light cream, half skim milk)
1/2 tsp salt
ground pepper to taste
pinch of nutmeg
1 cup dried bread crumbs
1/2 tsp paprika
2 -3 TBS butter, cut into small pieces
1/4-1/2 cup grated parmesan
1) Preheat the oven to 350ºF
2) Slice the potatoes thinly. Combine with milk, salt, pepper, and nutmeg in a large sauce pan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Cook gently for about 5 minutes, or until thick, stirring frequently.
3) Rub a shallow baking dish or pie dish with softened butter. Transfer potato mixture into pan, spreading potatoes in an even layer. Press the potatoes down so that they top layer is submerged in the liquid.
4) Sprinkle the top liberally with bread crumbs, paprika, and parmesan. Place pieces of butter evenly over the top.
5) Bake until the top is golden brown and the potatoes are tender, about 30-35 minutes.