Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Potato & Fennel Gratin


This is my favorite winter side dish.

It is so simple and you can prepare it the day before and just reheat it 30 minutes before serving.

I love it best with meatloaf, but it works well with any hearty main dish.

Don't skip the fennel, because that's what makes it different from other potato gratins.

This is like macaroni and cheese for me. I love it so much, I could just eat it out of the baking dish. So my rule when I make this is: Give all leftovers from this dish away.

Potato & Fennel Gratin: (recipe from Barefoot Contessa)

4 large russet potatoes (I use Yukon gold), peeled
1 tbsp butter
2 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, sliced thin
2 small fennel bulbs, trim away the stems and green parts
2 cups + 2 tbsp of grated Gruyere cheese
2 cups + 1 tbsp of heavy cream
salt & pepper

Butter a large casserole or gratin dish.

In a heavy skillet, melt 1 tbsp butter and 2 tbsp olive oil and saute your fennel slices and onion slices until cooked, about 15 min. on medium heat.

Set aside.

Using a mandolin (be careful that you don't cut off your fingers), slice potatoes very thin. Place in a large mixing bowl.

To the bowl of sliced potatoes, add the 2 cups of heavy cream and 2 cups of grated cheese, salt & pepper & cooked fennel onion mixture. Mix together until all is incorporated.

Pour into buttered gratin dish and pat down so the mixture is even.

Mix the last tbsp of heavy cream with the rest of the cheese and sprinkle on top.
Bake in a 350F oven for an hour and 30 minutes until bubbly and golden brown on top.

If getting too brown, cover with foil for the last half hour of baking.


The Japanese Redneck said...

Even though I've never used fennel, that dish looks truly like a comfort food dish. Wonderful.

So what do you do with all the fennel's green stuff? soup? saute?

Ed Schenk said...

Very nice combination!

kat said...

Fantastic! Love fennel in a dish like this!

Maria said...

I had a similar dish at a restaurant once and loved it. Thanks for the recipe. I am sure yours is much better too:)

Elizabeth said...

Potatoes, fennel and cream are three of my favorite things so I really want to try this! Looking over the directions though, it seems like you saute the fennel and onion and then the recipe doesn't say what to do with them. Do you mix them together with the potatoes, cream and cheese?

Stacey Snacks said...

Hi Elizabeth,
Sorry about that!

Yes, you mix the potatoes and fennel w/ the cheese and then put it in the buttered gratin dish.
I will go back and revise the recipe!

Thanks, Stacey

Bob said...

Oh my. That looks amazing, I would totally eat all of it. Heh.

Jen_from_NJ said...

Hi Stace, I would be happy to take any leftovers off of your hands! Looks amazing!

Jen_from_NJ said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
citronetvanille said...

Oh my goodness, you and I must think alike, I just made a gratin and finished eating it, now needs to be posted. I love your version of gratin, besides the pics are beautiful!

The Short (dis)Order Cook said...

I love fennel-potato gratin. I made one for my mother's birthday last year and it truly was a meal in itself. I ate the leftovers for lunch ever day. The mac and cheese comparison is right on!

A Feast for the Eyes said...

This is the dish that finally taught me to like fennel. Until then, I really didn't like it (long story, involving too much Ouzo). I should resurrect Ina's recipe, cuz it is a good one!

Jen said...

Agree with Feast for the Eyes...I now get fennel! Even my husband was questioning the fennel as I made it,but not when he was eating it.Oh my gawd!! This was fantastic! I didn't have anyone to give the leftovers to and just had some for breakfast! DELISH!

Dana said...

I made Ina's gratin which is similar to this last Thanksgiving and promised myself I would never make it again. WAY too yummy for me. I can say no to brownies but not to potato dishes that star cream and Gruyere.

Jen in Belgium said...

I made two dishes from your blog for dinner yesterday, this and the individual Stuart Little meatloaves. Between happy noises, my guy said the meal was "Delicious" and "In the top ten meals [he's] ever had." Thank you!
Is there any chance you might wind up using grams instead of, e.g. "4 russet potatoes"? Since I live in Belgium, first I have to get over the hurdle of translating the 'russet' part--and sometimes there is no equivalent-- and there wasn't here-- so I had to use Other Potatoes, and do not remember size of russets and was lost. Grams would be appreciated!

Ciao Chow Linda said...

I love all the B.C. recipes. They are always a no-fail success.

Popie said...

This looks delicious and plan to make it for New Year's dinner. I wonder is some parts of the recipe can be made the day ahead to save time day of cooking.

Stacey Snacks said...

Yes, make the whole thing the day before and just reheat it with foil the next day....I do it all the time! Happy New Year!