Root Vegetable Gratin

I saw this recipe in GQ, and decided to make this for a progressive dinner I went to in November.  It is so delicious with vegetables that aren’t used very often.  I added one yukon gold potato to the selection.  There wasn’t a scrap remaining in the dish after the entree was  served!

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Prep time: 20 minutes
Total time: 1 hr 40 mins

2 medium-size rutabagas (about 1½ pounds)
2 medium-size turnips (about 1½ pounds)
3 cups heavy cream
3½ tablespoons maple syrup
1/8 teaspoon ground cayenne
Pinch ground nutmeg
Butter, for greasing
¾ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
2½ teaspoons chopped rosemary
2½ teaspoons chopped thyme
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese

What to Do:
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

2. Trim the ends off the rutabagas and turnips and peel them with a sturdy peeler or pairing knife. Using a mandolin or sharp knife, slice the vegetables thinly (about 1/8 of an inch), setting aside the most attractive slices as you work.

3. In a medium saucepan, whisk the cream, maple syrup, cayenne and nutmeg together. Set the saucepan over medium-low heat. Slowly bring the mixture to a boil then turn off the heat.

4. Meanwhile, grease a 12-inch gratin dish with butter. In a large bowl, toss the vegetables with salt, pepper, rosemary and thyme.

5. Arrange 1/3 of the vegetables in the gratin dish, pour in 1/3 of the cream and evenly sprinkle 1/3 of the Parmesan (about 2 tablespoons) over top. Continue layering in this fashion, finishing the gratin with the reserved vegetable slices arranged neatly. Do not overfill the dish or it will bubble over while baking. (It’s a good idea to place the gratin on a sheet tray covered in aluminum foil so spills don’t dirty the oven.)

6. Cover the dish with foil. Bake on the middle rack for 30 minutes.

7. Remove the gratin from the oven and discard the foil. With a spatula, press down on the vegetables to submerge them in cream.

8. Return the gratin to the oven. Bake for approximately 50 minutes; pressing down on the vegetables one to two more times as it cooks. The gratin is done once golden and easily pierced with a knife.

9. Before serving, allow the gratin to rest about 10 minutes so the vegetables can absorb extra cooking liquid.

Created by Andrew Carmellini

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