By Caroline Dipping
Q: We ate at Donovan’s Steakhouse and couldn’t get over how delicious their au gratin potatoes were. They melted in my mouth. Would you happen to have or can you obtain their recipe? — Jennie Peeters, via e-mail
A: Recently, we ran the recipe for Donovan’s Sauteed Mushrooms. Executive chef Martine Venegas was just as happy to share his formula for spuds.
No wonder they melted in your mouth. This dish is a merry melange of wafer thin-sliced potatoes awash in heavy cream and cheese.
DONOVAN’S AU GRATIN POTATOES
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
4 garlic cloves, peeled
Pinch ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 large Idaho potatoes (about 11/2 pounds)
1 cup grated Gruyere cheese
Makes four servings
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a shallow 2-quart baking dish.
Place cream, garlic, nutmeg, salt and pepper in a sauce pan and bring to a boil. Strain through a colander to remove garlic cloves.
Peel potatoes. Using a mandoline or slicer, slice potatoes about 1/6-inch thick. Place a single layer of potatoes in the buttered pan. Sprinkle some of the cheese evenly over the potatoes. Pour some of the cream mixture over the cheese. Repeat layering process.
Cover pan with aluminum foil, and bake 45 to 50 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and let sit to firm up for at least 1 hour. Cut into portions in the pan and return to the oven for 20 minutes or until hot. Serve immediately.
— From executive chef Martine Venegas, Donovan’s Steakhouse
Caroline Dipping writes about food for The San Diego Union-Tribune.
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