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Comfort Food

Some days simply call for comfort, and to me, aside from pasta, nothing says warmth and coziness like gratin. Especially potato gratin.

But what if you don’t have the type of potatoes usually found in gratin, and are instead looking at an assortment of purple potatoes, orange sweet potatoes, and pale white turnips, and you still crave something rich? Then you go to the classic, with some color: Gratin Dauphinois (a la Design Sponge who showcases Beatrice Peltre’s recipe).

I made this with my purple potatoes, sweet potato, and assorted turnips, skipped the sage because I had none, but substituted what herbs I had – thyme, yes, and garlic. Scaled it down to feed just one hungry person, and perfectly hit the comfort zone I was aiming for: The food equivalent of a warm comforter that you snuggle into on a bitter cold night.

Flavoring the milk/cream prior to applying it to the vegetables is well worth the extra time – be patient, and you will be rewarded. And apart from the gratin’s wonderful taste, there is the visual spectacle of all those delicate colors blending into each other. This dish is lovely on several levels. A little sunshine jewel of a gratin on a dark winter day feeds the soul in addition to nourishing your body.

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