Jeanette - Off The Cuff

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Blogger at: and -- My name is Jeanette, and I was born in Sweden, but unlike the famous Muppet, I am not a professional Swedish Chef. I actually studied design and photography. I also was a freelance indie-rock critic for several magazines from 1998-2005, and had an in-house PR company for a while. Cooking is in my DNA--my dad's brother was a chef and their father was a pastry chef, my mom's mother was a caterer, who published a cookbook of traditional Finnish breads and pastries when she was 92. Everyone else in my family loves to cook, and we're not afraid to experiment. I have a yen for interior design and remodeling.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Potato & Leek Au Gratin

A really good "gratin" is such European comfort food... it's kind of like Mac and Cheese, to me, but fancier so you could serve it up with a nice cut of meat, and there it would make for a really festive meal.  But it's also so easy to do. 

I put together this little casserole a few days ago, but didn't have time to write up the description.  So without further ado, here it is, in all its beautiful simplicity! 


2 cups of 'fingerling' potatoes, or Baby Dutch yellow, or Yukons, sliced into 1/4" thick discs
2 leeks, sliced into 1/4" discs
2 cups heavy cream (!)
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
2-3 cloves of garlic (to your preference), minced
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground white pepper
1/2 cup grated Gouda cheese


 Preheat oven to 400-415.  Slice and layer ingredients in a large glass baking dish.  The shape is of no consequence.  

In a mixing bowl or measuring cup, whisk together mustard, cream, and minced garlic plus salt and pepper.  
Pour cream over all potatoes and leeks, and make sure they're submerged.  If necessary, dilute with a little water or milk.  (For that matter, you could use half-n-half, or  if you feel industrious, make a whole milk roux [see my Macaroni and cheeeeeeeeese!!!! recipe for instructions on Roux] if you want less fat.  But really, I kind of go nuts with the heavy cream when it comes to Au Gratin.)  

Sprinkle grated cheese on top. 

Bake with aluminum foil covering the dish for about 20 minutes, and then remove foil to allow to brown.  

The au gratin is done when the potatoes are fork tender, and the top is browned a bit and bubbly in the middle.


  1. This sounds fabulous. Must try.

    Your comment on my blog made me LOL. :)

  2. Well, I tried this, and it was sooooo delicous! My family loved it. Thank you!

  3. Yay! So glad you liked it... I've got some cream, and some potatoes that I need to use up. I might make some myself tonight. :) Cheers!

  4. So here it is! :-) The recipe posted the very closest to my birthday! :-) I'm willing to make this in the next few weeks after my heat-stroke inducing apartment chills out. :-) Love your inspirational pics and descriptions!! :-)

    1. Oh it's a good one! It's kind of modified from one that my mom makes. I added leeks to it, and Dijon-- I don't think hers has mustard, but otherwise, lots of garlic & cream! :)