Two Potato, Three Canadian Cheese Gratin

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This gratin features Real cream, cheese and butter.  This delicious and wonderfully comforting fall
casserole serves perfectly alongside roast meats or poultry; it’s a real
Thanksgiving hit!  Make/bake ahead and reheat for fool proof entertaining.

6 strips bacon, cut into ½-inch (1 cm) pieces                 
1 tbsp (15 mL) butter        
2 cloves garlic, minced     
2 cups  (500 mL) thinly sliced leeks, white and light green parts only
1 tsp (5 mL) dried thyme leaves         
2 tbsp (30 mL) grainy Dijon mustard       
1-½ cups (375 mL) 35% whipping cream     
1 lb (500 g) each, sweet potatoes and yellow fleshed potatoes       
½ cup (125 mL) each, freshly grated Canadian Parmesan, Asiago and Gouda cheese
2 tbsp (30 mL) finely chopped chives

1.  Preheat oven to 400*F (200*C).  Lightly butter an 8-cup (2 L) shallow baking dish.
2.  In large skillet over medium-high heat, cook bacon, until crisp. Transfer to paper
towel-lined plate; set aside. Drain off fat from skillet, reserving brown bits; reduce heat to medium and melt butter. Add garlic and leeks; cook stirring often for about 3 to 5 min or until slightly softened.  Remove from heat; season with thyme and stir in mustard and cream; set aside. 
3.  Peel and thinly slice potatoes about 1/8-inch (3 mm) thick and place one-third into
prepared dish; sprinkle with half of the reserved bacon. Spoon half of the leek mixture over top.  Repeat layer of potatoes, bacon, and leek mixture. Top with remaining potatoes.
4.  Cover with aluminum foil and bake for about 40 to 50 min or until potatoes are tender
when pierced with a knife. Remove foil and sprinkle with cheese; bake for 8 to 10 min or until cheese melts and sauce is bubbly. Let stand for 5 min before serving.   Sprinkle with chives.  Yield: 4-6 servings

Cooking Tips:
*Cut leeks in half and wash well. A mandolin or food processor makes thin, even potato slices.  To make slicing easier, cut potatoes in half crosswise and place flat edge down on mandolin.
*Make individual gratins in six – 1 cup (250 mL) buttered ramekins, place ramekins on baking tray to catch any overflow and for easy placement in oven.

Source: Dairy Farmers of Canada

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