For many, it is impossible to imagine an Easter celebration without scalloped potatoes. For me, they always evoke fond memories of my beloved mother-in-law Louise, who always made them at Easter. Traditional recipes call for milk, cheddar, dots of butter throughout and flour for thickening. I brought a French twist and updated the classic with some shallots and thyme, cream instead of milk, flour and butter, and nutty gruyère cheese for its great flavor and meltability. Fair warning: this dish Is just so good, it just might upstage the ham!
2 shallots, diced
1 T butter
1 T fresh thyme leaves
2 t sea or kosher salt
1/2 t finely ground pepper
3 1/2 lbs of Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced into rounds, using a mandoline
3 c grated gruyère cheese
3 c heavy cream
chopped chives for serving
Preheat oven to 350 F. Generously butter a 9 X 13 inch baking dish. In a frying pan, melt 1 T butter and sauté the shallots until translucent. Remove from heat and reserve for assembly. Mix the salt and pepper together.
For ease of layering, you will visually divide the ingredients as follows: the potatoes in 3, the cheese in 3, the salt and pepper in 3 and the shallots and thyme in 2. On the bottom of the baking dish, place one layer of potatoes. Top with shallots, thyme, salt and pepper. Repeat. Finish with a top layer of potatoes, salt and pepper and the final portion of gruyère cheese. Heat the cream in a medium saucepan until warmed through. Pour the cream evenly over the whole thing. Cover tightly with foil and bake on a sheet pan for 1 hour, on a middle rack. Remove the foil and bake another half hour until bubbly and golden. Sprinkle with chopped chives and rest 5-10 minutes before serving.
Looking for other Easter recipes? Check out Glorious Pizza Gaina:
and Sublime Rolled and Herb-Stuffed Lamb Roast: