Potato Leek Gratin

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Layer thinly sliced potatoes in a gratin dish, and then take your time sautéing the leeks, letting them turn a little golden and crisp around the edges, which brings out their sweetness. Add the leeks to the potatoes, and using the same pan in which you cooked the leeks, scrape up the brown bits at the bottom of the pan with a mix of cream, garlic, thyme and nutmeg, pouring that over the potatoes and leeks.

Ingredients


  • 2


    tablespoons unsalted butter, more for greasing the pan

  • 2


    large leeks, trimmed and halved lengthwise

  • 1 ½


    pounds peeled Yukon Gold potatoes

  • 1


    teaspoon kosher salt

  • ½


    teaspoon ground black pepper

  • 2


    thyme sprigs

  • 1


    cup heavy cream

  • 1


    fat garlic clove, finely chopped

  • 1


    bay leaf

  • ¼


    teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg

  • ¾


    cup Gruyère, grated

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Preparation

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees and butter a 2-quart gratin dish. Wash the leeks to remove any grit and slice thinly crosswise.
  2. Using a mandoline or sharp knife, slice the potatoes into rounds, 1/8-inch thick. Toss with 3/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Layer the rounds in the gratin dish.
  3. Melt the 2 tablespoons butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add leeks, remaining salt and pepper, and thyme. Cook, stirring, until leeks are tender and golden, 5 to 7 minutes. Discard thyme and scatter the leeks over the potatoes.
  4. Add cream, garlic and bay leaf to the skillet, scraping up browned bits of leeks from the bottom of the pan. Simmer gently for 5 minutes. Stir in nutmeg.
  5. Pour the cream over the leeks and potatoes and top with the Gruyère. Cover with aluminum foil and transfer to the oven. Bake for 40 minutes, uncover and bake until the cheese is bubbling and golden, 15 to 20 minutes longer. Let cool slightly before serving.
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