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Butternut Squash and Potato Gratin With Gruyere

Butternut Squash and Potato Gratin with Gruyere
Alfred Portale, 12 Seasons Cookbook

2 lbs butternut squash
3 large potatoes
1 tsp chopped fresh thyme
1 tsp chopped fresh marjoram
1 tsp chopped fresh sage
Coarse salt and freshly ground white pepper
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups (about) heavy cream
4 ounces Gruyere cheese, coarsely grated

Preheat oven to 375°F
Generously butter a 9x12” gratin dish. Peel the squash (potato peeler works great). Remove the seeds. Slice the squash into 1/8” rounds or half circles (bottom portion.)

Peel potatoes and cut into 1/8” slices.

In a small bowl, combine thyme, marjoram and sage.

Layer 1/3 of squash slices in baking dish; use less attractive slices on bottom. Sprinkle with some of the herbs and season with salt and pepper. Layer ½ of potato slices over the squash. Sprinkle with some of the herbs and ½ of the garlic. Season with salt and pepper.

Spread another 1/3 of the squash slices on the potatoes. Again, sprinkle more herbs and season with salt and pepper. Spread the remaining potatoes in another layer over the squash and sprinkle some herbs and the rest of the garlic. Top with the remaining squash and herbs and season with salt and pepper.

Firmly press down on the squash and potato layers with a large spoon, spatula or your hand. Slowly pour the cream over the top and down the sides of the dish. Add enough to just barely cover the vegetables when pressed. Too much cream will result in a soupy gratin, too little will make it dry.

Cover the dish with foil and bake for 45 to 50 minutes. Remove the foil and sprinkle with the Gruyere. Continue to bake, uncovered for 25 to 30 more minutes, or until the vegetables are tender, the cream is nearly absorbed and the top of the gratin is lightly browned. Let the gratin rest for 10 minutes to absorb all the cream before serving.  Serves 6

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