Kitchen Garden

Gratin Dauphinois

Gratin Dauphinois

Saturday I decided to make a gratin.

We have storage potatoes although it will soon be time to plant them in the garden.

I’d been thinking about gratin for a week.

Scouring cookbooks for a recipe, the dish appears to have fallen from grace from modern, comprehensive guidebooks in my collection. I settled on the simplicity of Julia Child’s Gratin Dauphinois from Mastering the Art of French Cooking.

I modified the recipe to use ingredients on hand β€” white sharp cheddar for Swiss, skim milk for whole β€” and otherwise followed her direction diligently. If you don’t know Child’s masterwork I encourage you to discover it today. My results from using her recipes have been timeless and always delicious.

What may be funny is I gave no thought to what to serve with the gratin. If I lived by myself, I would have eaten the gratin and called it a meal. The grace of being married 35 years is it encourages one to be a better person. We settled on a vegetarian chik patty and steamed broccoli as accompaniment. For beverage I drank cool, filtered water as my cold tapers off.

Saturday afternoons are my time in the kitchen. I miss the old routine of listening to Garrison Keillor’s A Prairie Home Companion while preparing dinner. I tune to the classical radio station but it isn’t the same. The scent of rubbed garlic from the baking dish arouses memories of past meals β€” especially those I prepared with our daughter when she lived in Colorado. Fond memories in a life that’s changing more each day.

I’ll get by. The gratin helps.