This is a good side dish if the main protein ingredient is ‘dry’ and needs some kind of sauce or gravy. The gratin acts as a cheese sauce for the dish, plus you are getting your ‘two veg’. I make this often, as my family are not quite keen on leeks on their own. It goes very well with the Gammon in Ginger Ale with Honey & Mustard.
1kg (2lb 3oz) potatoes, thinly sliced * 2 large leeks, trimmed and cut into 1cm slices * 200g (7oz) mild cheese, sliced * 425ml (¾ pint) single cream * salt & freshly ground black pepper * chopped chives
Pre-heat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas 4. Cook the potatoes in salted, boiling water for 3 minutes, until slightly softened, drain. Blanch the leeks in boiling water for 1 minute, until softened, then drain. Turn half the potatoes into a shallow, ovenproof dish and spread them out to the edge. Cover with two-thirds of the leeks, then add the remaining potatoes.
Tuck the slices of cheese and remaining leeks in among the potatoes. Season and pour the cream over. Bake for 1 hour, until tender and golden. Cover with foil if the top starts to over brown . Serve with a sprinkle of chopped chives.
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