Chou Dauphinoise

By Camille Arcese
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Dauphinoise potatoes are one of my favourite ways to enjoy them decadently. A French version of scalloped potatoes, it’s a creamy casserole of layered potatoes and gruyere cheese. But as I was thinking about how to up the ante on the often-overlooked green cabbage, I thought the saltiness of the cheesy potatoes in a Dauphinoise would pair well with the texture and slight sweetness of sautéed cabbage and leeks. I was not wrong…

SERVES
6
 TO
8

Ingredients

  • 1-1/2 cups whipping cream
  • 3 cloves garlic, large ones, peeled and lightly pressed
  • 5 cups green cabbage, chopped
  • 1 leek, white and light green parts only, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 stems fresh thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 6 turns freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2 pinches nutmeg, freshly grated
  • 3 Yukon gold potatoes, medium-sized, peeled and sliced roughly 3 millimeters thick
  • 1-1/2 cups Gruyere cheese, grated on large holes
  • Sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon butter, cold

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 425°.
  2. In a small saucepan heat the cream and garlic cloves over medium until gently bubbling around the edges. Remove from heat and set aside to infuse while you carry on with the recipe.
  3. Heat a large sauté pan over medium. Once heated add the butter and olive oil, cabbage, leek, thyme stems, salt and pepper. Sweat while stirring often until cabbage is al dente and you can taste its natural sugars - about six to eight minutes. Depending on the size of your pan you may need to work in batches and add more oil and butter as needed. Transfer to a holding dish and season with nutmeg.
  4. Discard the thyme stems and spread the cabbage and leek in an even layer on the bottom of a 23 centimeter oven-safe dish (I like using my cast iron pan). Shingle a layer of the potatoes over top in an overlapping circular pattern. Discard the garlic cloves and gently pour about half of the cream over the potatoes. Season with salt and top with roughly half of the Gruyere. Shingle the remaining potatoes, dress with the cream, season again with salt, and dress with the remaining cheese. Dot the cold butter here and there over top, cover tightly with foil (the heavy-duty kind is best here), and bake in the preheated oven for about 20 minutes until potatoes are tender and cooked through when pierced with a paring knife.
  5. Increase the oven temp to 450°F, remove the foil, and bake about ten minutes more until the cheese is golden brown and bubbling. Cool just a few minutes before serving hot.    

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