Someone asked today how to make a gratin dauphinois without the cream separating and going oily. This is Edouard de Pomiane’s answer. However, I often leave out the flour with no ill effect. He specifies white Dutch potatoes — I’m not sure what he means by this, but I generally use waxy ones, as that’s about all we can get round here. Quantities are not very exact.
750 g potatoes, washed, peeled, and finely sliced (one of the few occasions I use the food processor!)
750 ml milk
150 ml double cream
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 tsp flour
salt and pepper
I use one of those Spanish earthenware gratin dishes.
Dry the potatoes in a cloth after you’ve sliced them. Butter your dish and layer the potatoes in it, sprinkling each layer with salt, pepper, and garlic. Meanwhile heat the milk and when it’s nearly boiling pour over the potatoes till you can just see it below the top layer. Mix the cream with the flour, if using, and pour over the top. Put in a hot oven (180C) and bake for 45 mins to 1 hour, till the potatoes are done. Raise the heat if necessary at the end to brown the top (or cheat and pop it under the grill for a minute!).
The flour is there specifically to stop the cream separating.