Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Potato and Greens Gratin

I'm actually starting to feel embarrassed about the overabundance of kale on the blog. Sort of. Maybe. I guess not really. OK, not at all because I've got another kale recipe for you to try (it's my personal goal to get each and every one of you loving kale before I quit this blog!).

This time the kale is layered with potatoes, cheese, and milk in a gratin. A gratin is a French name for a casserole-style dish that's got an ingredient (usually vegetables) baked with cheese and/or butter until it forms a browned upper crust.

You can use any greens you want, but I find spinach to be too limp and mushy on its own so adding lots of kale gives it a more chewy and satisfying texture. The spinach and kale mixture was sauteed with a shallot and spiced with fresh grated nutmeg, salt, and pepper. I have heard that nutmeg is a great flavoring with dark leafy greens AND anything creamy. Since this dish has both, it was a no-brainer to add it.

I had baby honey gold potatoes that needed to be used up and I used my mandoline to slice them all as thin as possible. The cheese I had on hand was either a baby swiss or parmigiano reggiano so I used both.

Simply begin layering all your ingredients in a buttered casserole dish, add milk or cream, top with more cheese and butter, and bake until done. Voila. Delicious and healthy winter side dish.

Potato and Greens Gratin
3-4 cups thinly sliced potatoes (the waxy ones like yukon gold work best)
1 shallot, finely chopped
1 bundle kale, cleaned, stems removed, and leaves chopped
3 cups fresh spinach, chopped
fresh grated nutmeg, salt, and pepper
2 cups grated cheese (gruyere would be great, but anything will work)
1 cup whole milk (or maybe a bit more)
2 Tbsp butter

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and butter a casserole dish.

In a medium skillet, saute shallot, kale, and spinach in a pat of butter or some olive oil and season with fresh grated nutmeg, salt, and pepper. Cook until shallot is soft and kale and spinach have wilted. Let cool and if it's watery, make sure you squeeze out the liquid in a kitchen towel.

Begin with your first layer of potatoes in the bottom of the casserole. This part is important, so listen up: add a very light dusting of salt and pepper. Add a thin layer of sauteed greens. Add a thin layer of shredded cheese.

Repeat layers (don't forget to lightly salt and pepper each layer of potatoes) until all your ingredients are used up. Pour milk into dish, it should come almost up to the top of the potatoes. Your top layer should be cheese. Dot top with little chunks of butter.

Bake uncovered for 45 minutes or until a nice brown crust forms. Let sit at room temperature for 5-10 minutes before serving.


  1. No shame--I *love* kale. It is SO good!


  2. What the F is kale?? I swear lady... You make up 1/2 of your ingredients...

  3. NICHOLAS!!! Is that you????

    :) :) Thanks for the laugh!

    I will do a whole post on kale and I will make a huge plate of it for you, Kim, and the kids! But it's super green so Nathan probably won't touch it.

    Love you!