Mollie Katzen's Potato, Turnip & Carrot Gratin
with Garlic-Herb Béchamel Sauce
This recipe is an excerpt from the book, The Vegetable Dishes I Can't Live Without, by Mollie Katzen.
It's nice to slip in some turnips among the more familiar potatoes and carrots, for something slightly different.
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 1/2 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
1 1/4 cups warmed milk
1 bay leaf
Salt, to taste
Nonstick cooking spray
1/2 pound unpeeled Yukon gold potatoes
1/2 pound turnips
1/2 pound carrots
1 cup minced shallots
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 cup coarse bread crumbs
1/2 cup grated Swiss cheese (Gruyère or Emmenthaler)
- Melt the butter in a small saucepan over low heat, adding the garlic and thyme when it is melted.
- Whisk in the flour and keep whisking for a minute or so as it forms a thick paste.
- Keep whisking as you drizzle in the warmed milk, keeping the mixture moving until there are no lumps.
- Add the bay leaf and turn the heat way down. Cook, stirring frequently, for about 5 to 8 minutes, or until smooth and silky. Remove from the heat and remove the bay leaf. Stir in a dash of salt and a few shakes of white pepper, then set aside.
- Preheat oven to 375ºF (175ºC). Lightly spray a 2-quart gratin dish with nonstick spray.
- Cut the potatoes, turnips, and carrots into very thin slices (about 1/8 inch). For the carrots, do this on the diagonal. Spread the cut vegetables (including the shallots) together in the prepared pan to make a single mixed layer. Sprinkle lightly with salt and black pepper.
- Pour the béchamel sauce from step 4 over the top of the vegetables and cover the pan tightly with foil. Bake in the center of the oven for 1 hour, or until the vegetables are fork-tender. Remove the dish from the oven and remove the foil.
- Heat the broiler. Sprinkle the bread crumbs and then the grated cheese on top of the vegetables. Broil until the cheese is melted and beginning to form a crust. Serve hot.
Makes 4 to 5 servings.
- It's easiest to warm the milk in the microwave right in its measuring cup.
- Good bread crumbs are made by hand from good bread. My favorites for this recipe are either a home-style whole wheat or pumpernickel. Make your own bread crumbs by drying out some of your favorite bread, then crumbling it either by hand (in a plastic bag, so it won't go all over the place) or in a food processor with the steel blade (a few spurts).
Excerpt from The Vegetable Dishes I can't Live Without, by Mollie Katzen. Copyright (c) 2007 Tante Malka Inc. All rights reserved. Published by Hyperion.