Growing up, the Potato Au Gratin we had at the dinner table did not look like the version I make today! It came from a box and I think if we had eaten it in the dark, they would have glowed orange! And although they may have been glowing orange and made of powdered cheese and dehydrated potatoes, I still loved them.
I see those boxed potatoes in the market to this day and I am always tempted to buy them, but I stopped eating those boxed potatoes a long time ago. I just can’t bring myself to do it. (I feel like Ina would be too disappointed in me.)
I decided it was time to make the real, grown up version, of Potatoe Au Gratin. I read many recipes and watched several videos. I tested several recipes and had many failed attempts. There were versions that were watery, versions of undercooked potatoes, potatoes cooked perfectly but lacking flavor, and the worst of all, the version that resulted in a dish of mushy potatoes sitting in cream. As frustrated as I was, I persevered on my quest for perfect Potatoes Au Gratin.
I found success thanks to a base recipe by Chef Tyler Florence. The dish is savory, satisfying and also quite elegant. Potatoe Au Gratin is the perfect side dish to serve with a bistro steak or with roasted chicken. It’s become one of my favorite recipes, especially for when an indulgent special occasion side dish is called for.