Saturday, January 14, 2006

Royal Potatoes au Gratin

That's right, people. I call this dish Royal because it is purple. Purple potatoes are what I had on hand from the friendly potato guy at the Farmer's Market when I suddenly decided, for the first time in my life, to make Pommes de Terre au Gratin. Or Taters O'Gratin if you wanna be Irish American about it.

When I got the unsolicited idea, I thought to myself, first, "What the hell?"

And then, I went with it and thought, "Well, how hard could it be, I mean, without dumping a can of cheddar soup and some crispy fried onions on some potatoes?" So, I looked at a few random recipes online, then did what I normally do: remember a few basic ingredients from what I've read then forget everything and stumble blindly into what could be an unmitigated disaster.

First thing I did was slice the potatoes thinly - I know they are supposed to be eventually layered. Or scalloped. Wait. What does scallopped mean? Ah. Never mind.

Next, I carmelized some onions and scallions and then put some flour in there - I gleaned this from somewhere. Helps with thickening, later on right? ... Right?... Hello?

Then, I poured some almond milk in there. Not a typo. I didn't have regular milk on hand, so I figured what the heck, it'll just be a bit sweeter than normal. And then I stirred in a bunch of carefully and professionally selected grated cheese. That is to say, I looked in the cheese drawer which contained a 2/3 used packet of grated pizza cheese from Trader Joe's (which I think is parm and moz), a hunk of emmenthaler and some low-fat smoked gouda.

I layered purple potatoes and cheese sauce a couple times and sprinkled the rest of the grated cheese on top. Salt, pepper and paprika. Baked covered at 350 degrees for about 40 minutes. Then for 10 more minutes with the cover off.

And voilá!

Come on, don't be shy. Step right up.

Mmmm! A fresh side-dish of steamed broccoli and red pepper with a tasty dressing of flax seed oil, sesame oil, rice wine vinegar, Braggs, a dash of ponzu sauce and some toasted sesame seeds.

And that, my kind reader, was dinner. And it contained the color purple. And purple is always good. But I am still confused. Is Potatoes au Gratin ie: Scalloped Potatoes a fancy French dish or a white trash staple? ... Anyone? ... Beuller?


At 8:25 PM, Blogger Joe said...

I love purple potatoes! The first time I used them we made Purple mashed potatoes... good but too weird lookin!


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