Taste the Local Difference says that potatoes are ready to pick in Michigan. They note that potatoes were cultivated over 4,500 years ago in ancient Peru, in areas too cold to grow wheat or corn, and that Michigan grows more new potatoes and potatoes for chip manufacturing than any other state in the nation. Something I didn’t know was that in addition to being a good source of potassium and fiber, a potato with the skin on provides almost half the daily requirement of Vitamin C.
You can learn more about our state’s potato industry from the Michigan Potato Industry Commission and I don’t think you can say “Michigan” and “potatoes” without giving a shout-out to Better Made Potato Chips of Detroit Michigan!
There are some recipes for potatoes from Local Difference available at the link above and several more on a previous potato feature including a recipe for Herby Potato Rosti that I plan to modify with the addition of 1/2 pound of award-winning Leelanau Raclette! Read on for a recipe from Eric Villegas of the Michigan cooking show Fork in the Road!
5-6 Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled
2 red onions, cut julienne and caramelized in olive oil
1 cup wisantigo parmesan, or similar, grated
3/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup wood roasted garlic puree
sea salt & ground black pepper, to taste
Clancy’s Fancy Hot Sauce, to taste
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and butter a 9 by 13-inch baking dish and set aside.
Using a sharp knife, mandolin or the slicing attachment on a food processor, slice the potatoes approximately 1/8-inch thick.
In a small mixing bowl whisk the heavy cream, garlic puree, hot sauce and sea salt together until smooth.
Start the first layer by laying the slices in overlapping rows. Once the first layer is down, season lightly with the sea salt and pepper, then scatter with the caramelized onions and a couple tablespoons of
Continue building layers until you’re out of potatoes or out of room to build, save 1/2 cup of the cheese for the top.
Pour 2/3 cup of the seasoned heavy cream over the gratin and push down on the potatoes to work the air out from the layers. Add remaining liquid only if the cream does not come to the surface when you push down.
Sprinkle the gratin with cheese, cover loosely with foil and place in middle of oven for 1 hour.
Check for doneness by inserting the point of a paring knife or wooden skewer straight into the gratin. If it goes through smoothly, remove the foil, return to oven, and turn on the broiler just long enough to turn the top golden-brown.
Remove and allow to sit at room temperature for 15 to 20 minutes before serving.