Here is one of my favorite recipes for the winter season: le gratin dauphinois (au gratin potatoes in English). This French recipe is very easy to cook and it’s so delicious! My favorite gratin dauphinois recipe is the one from the well-known chef Alain Ducasse. By the way, if you’re looking for a French cookbook with simple recipes for every day (without the fat and without the fuss), I really recommend his book: Simple, Healthy, and Good.
What Is A Gratin Dauphinois?
A gratin dauphinois is a traditional French dish from the Dauphiné region in south-eastern France. The potatoes are peeled and sliced to the thickness of a coin, usually with a mandoline; they are layered in a gratin pan and cooked in a slow oven.
The first mention of the dish is from 1788 as it was served at a dinner offered to municipal officers of the city of Gap. This dish was traditionally eaten by the peasants in the Dauphiné region which is a mountainous region.
This traditional potato dish is usually eaten on its own with a green salad. There are several variations: some add onions, ham, or cheese (gruyere), however, the traditional recipe does not contain these. You can adapt the recipe given and personalize it as you wish!
The Gratin Dauphinois By Alain Ducasse
- Peel the potatoes, wash them, and dry them. Use a mandolin to cut perfect little discs of potatoes (3mm thickness). Peel and chop the garlic clove. Place the sliced potatoes in a saucepan. Pour in the cold milk over the potatoes, and bring to a simmer. Add the thyme, bay leaf, and chopped garlic. Season with the fleur de sel, the pepper, and add the nutmeg. Mix gently. Cook the potatoes gently for 40 minutes. Then cover the saucepan and let it infuse for 10 minutes.
- Heat the oven to 220°C/ 392°F. Drain the potatoes and set aside the cooking milk. Arrange the first layer of potatoes in the gratin pan. Then, cover it with cream. Cover with another layer of potatoes. Add the rest of the cream. Pour the rest of the cooking milk from the potatoes up to 1 cm from the top of the gratin pan. Bake the gratin for about 20 minutes until it is golden brown.
- Serve the gratin in its dish right out of the oven. Add some pepper.
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Bonjour! I’m Leonce, I’m French and I’m a Parisian expat currently living in the city center of Amsterdam (I previously lived in the 4th arrondissement of Paris, on the Ile-Saint-Louis). I created Leonce Chenal back in 2018 when I was living in London and missing my home country way too much. Because I truly believe you don’t have to be French or to live in France to experience the French art de vivre, Leonce Chenal is a French digital magazine to help you live your French life, wherever you are. Enjoy <3