Summer Potato Kale Gratin

Screen shot 2011 05 06 at 11.36.27 AM Summer Potato Kale Gratin
Oh happy day – my CSA started up again this week! The first few weeks of the season are usually quite leafy green-heavy. This is, of course, very healthy, but after the third week of kale and spinach, it starts to present a bit of a culinary challenge.

Last year, while Googling (actually, I was probably Swagbucking, but whatever) for kale recipes, I came across the most sinfully delicious recipe, which I have since made time and again: Potato Kale Gratin. I discovered it on this little, now defunct blog called Tap Root Farms Recipes, which is a wonderfully random collection of recipes shared by recipients of the Tap Root Farm CSA.

Anyway, back to this Potato & Kale recipe. It is NOT low-fat. It is NOT low in calories. But oh my heavens, it is mouth-wateringly good. Even my kids ask for it – and no, they don’t pick out the kale! (Of course, smother anything in butter, cream and cheese and yeah, it’s bound to be good!)

I like to serve the gratin on Shabbat with a piece of salmon and a fresh salad (CSA greens). If we are having a crowd, I’ll make a quinoa pilaf, too. That way everything but the gratin is light – and you don’t feel too weighted down from eating all that butter and cream. If I make it during the week, I serve it as the main course, together with a big salad or a pot of veggie soup.

Kale and Potato Au Gratin

Note that I have adjusted the instructions on the original recipe to make it much simpler and less patchkied.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lg bunch kale, washed,ribbed and torn or chopped roughly
  • 1 small onion, thinly sliced, optional
  • 2 cloves garlic sliced or pressed
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • 1 T. butter
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 large potatoes peeled, sliced into  1/4″-thick rounds
  • 3 T. butter, into pats
  • 3/4 c. or more milk or cream (I’ve made it with milk and it’s still good, but the cream is better)
  • 1 c sharp white cheddar – grated (I have a hard time finding sharp white, so we substitute without a problem)
Instructions:
  • Grease a 2 qt casserole . Preheat oven to 350.
  • Saute the onion and garlic in mixture of olive oil and butter. When onion is translucent, add the kale and saute until wilted. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside. When cool, chop fine.
  • Make a bottom layer of sliced potatoes, then top with pats of butter and season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle a generous handful of grated cheese over the potatoes.
  • On top of the cheese, layer the chopped kale – use your hands and just spread it out over the potatoes. You can toss on some more shredded cheese for good measure, if you like.
  • Repeat the potato layer, with more butter, salt and pepper on top. Then finish off the cheese and pour the milk or cream over the entire gratin. It should come up to the top layer of the potatoes, although not fully submerge them. If you don’t have enough liquid, add some more (sometime I do half milk, half cream, if I’m feeling “healthy” – ha ha ha!)
  • Bake for about 1.25 hours – checking to make sure that the milk or cream is absorbed and the gratin is “firm”. If the top is getting too brown, loosely cover with foil.
If you listen to anything I say on this blog, listen to this: Make this gratin this summer. Your tastebuds will thank me. (Your hips may hate me, but hey – I can take it!)Now it’s your turn to share: What’s your favorite veggie recipe that takes advantage of some of the summer’s bounty. And yes, I realize summer means different veggies in different parts of the world, so whether you want to share a root veggie recipe, or a tomato recipe, it’s all good.If you have a blog, PLEASE link up using the Mr. Linky. I’d love to spread some traffic love around. Otherwise, feel free to leave your recipes in the comments section.

Thank you! And B’tayavon!

Comments

comments

Comments

  1. I don’t have it handy, but mark bittman’s recipe for collard greens with double garlic changed my life. My CSA can be green heavy too in the winter, and I used to Beg people to trade their beets with me for collards, until I found that recipe.

  2. Mara, you inspired me to do a little research into seasonal veggies and share a standard go-to-style salad. Thanks, and have a great Shabbos!

  3. Here’s another Kale recipe for you. My husband especially loves it. We make it with our Kale bounty from our garden and it’s great to have all winter. Keeps well in the freezer. I also add cubed tofu to the soup for extra protein.

    Super Energy Kale Soup

    Prep and Cook Time: Prep and cooking time: 40 minutes

    Ingredients:
    1 medium onion, chopped
    4 cloves garlic, chopped
    5 cups chicken or vegetable broth
    1 medium carrot, diced into ¼-inch cubes (about 1 cup)
    1 cup diced celery
    2 red potatoes, diced into ½-inch cubes
    3 cups kale, rinsed, stems removed and chopped very fine
    2 tsp dried thyme
    2 tsp dried sage
    salt and pepper to taste

    Chop garlic and onions and let sit for 5 minutes to bring out their hidden health benefits.
    Heat 1 TBS broth in a medium soup pot.
    Healthy Sauté onion in broth over medium heat for about 5 minutes stirring frequently.
    Add garlic and continue to sauté for another minute.
    Add broth, carrots, and celery and bring to a boil on high heat.
    Once it comes to a boil reduce heat to a simmer and continue to cook for another 5 minutes. Add potatoes and kale and cook until potatoes are tender, about 15 more minutes.
    Add rest of ingredients and cook another 5 minutes. If you want to simmer for a longer time for extra flavor and richness, you may need to add a little more broth.
    Serves 4

  4. I know it sounds weird, but Braised Radish is one of the simplest, and most economical veggie dishes I make. I linked up to my blog.

  5. I’m with Amy. Mark Bittman’s recipe is fantastic–I make it all the time. I do a variation on with fresh ginger called “Ginger Kale”. (Pun very much intended.)

  6. This gratin looks delicious. I think both my hubby and son would love it.

    This week, I posted a recipe for Garden Stuffed Peppers. It’s not kosher, so I didn’t want to participate in the linky, but if you’re interested, this is the recipe:

    http://www.thegentlemom.com/2011/08/garden-stuffed-peppers.html

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