Whether you gather with a large group of extended family or friends, or stay closer to your own immediate family for the holidays, food seems to always be at the center of these gatherings. And, whether you’re hosting or bringing a dish to someone else’s home, being able to impress guests with both taste and appearance is always a plus. And so today, I want to share a beautiful dish with you.
Growing up, my grandmother hosted Thanksgiving and Christmas, until she literally couldn’t anymore. And, each year I knew there was going to be a delicious spread of dishes at her home on the holidays. She cooked everything from scratch, and sharing food was definitely one of the many ways she spread love to us. One of my favorite dishes was her Homemade Cheesy Potato Gratin.
Now, several years since her passing, I have kept the tradition alive with a variant of her recipe, and it is always a show-stopper. The great part about this dish is that you can do a lot of the prep ahead of time, and it also looks like a million bucks when it comes out of the oven, even if it only took you 30 min. or so to prep.
For a Friendsgiving we hosted earlier this month I made this for the first time this year. It was beautiful and delicious just like I remember it when my grandma made it for me as a child. This year, instead of using just heavy cream, like my grandmother did, I swapped half of it out for Sneakz Vanilla Milkshake Drink. I couldn’t tell any difference in taste from my previous version. But, with this swap, I was able to cut the fat/ saturated fat in half, and get all the added goodness of a little Sneakz too! See full recipe below.
What You Need:
- Approximately 5 lbs Assorted Potatoes (I used equal parts red, russet and sweet)
- 1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese (fresh grated; plus extra, if desired)
- 1/2 cup Romano Cheese (fresh grated)
- 1/2 cup Gruyere Cheese (fresh grated)
- 3/4 cup Heavy Whipping Cream
- 3/4 cup Sneakz Vanilla Milkshake
- 4-5 Garlic Cloves (minced)
- A small handful of Fresh Parsley (chopped)
- 2-3 Small Shallots
- 1 ½ Tbsp Fresh Thyme Leaves (plus more for garnish, if desired)
- 1 tbsp Butter
- Salt and Pepper
How To Make It
- Pre-heat oven to 415 degrees.
- Using a mandoline slicer, thinly slice all potatoes and set aside. This is definitely the most time-consuming part of this dish, but well worth it! *I used the Michel Bras Mandoline from Williams Sonoma.
- Slice shallots into medium sized pieces and set aside.
- Next, in a large mixing bowl combine the following: parmesan cheese, romano cheese, gruyere cheese, heavy cream, Sneakz, garlic and thyme leaves. Season with salt and pepper and then mix together until well combined.
- Dip to coat potatoes, one handful at a time, until well coated. Then transfer coated potatoes to another bowl, and continue this until all potatoes have been well-coated with your creamy cheese mixture.
- Then, grease a casserole dish with butter on bottom and partially up the sides. *I used a 2.5-quart oval Casserole Dish from CorningWare. You can use any shape, but I do think that the oval yields the most beautiful arrangement/ look.
- Pick up a small grouping of potatoes and start to line them up at one end of the dish. Continue this, wrapping potatoes around the dish until you have used all of your potatoes and your dish is full.
- If you run out of potatoes and have not tightly covered/ packed the entire dish, just slice up and coat another potato to fill in empty spots. You do want your dish to be completely filled.
- Pour any additional creamy cheese mixture atop the potatoes once the dish is full. Also, sprinkle with additional parmesan if desired.
- Cover dish and bake for approximately 40 minutes.
- Then remove from oven and place shallot slices throughout the dish, pushing them into small openings/ gaps within the potatoes.
- Return dish to oven and continue cooking, uncovered, for an additional 45 minutes – to an hour until potatoes are golden and crisp (time will vary depending on oven).
- Serve and enjoy! Store leftovers (if there are any!) covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Happy Thanksgiving friends! Whether you try this dish this week or save it for other holidays this year, be sure to make it! It is delicious, beautiful and a great dish to serve family and friends alike!