Friday, 11 February 2011

Jerusalem Artichoke Gratin

This is another meal I had the other week and just haven't got around to posting it! A couple of Sundays ago I'd picked up some Jerusalem artichokes and Italian spicy sausages from the little community farmers market in Palmers Green station's car park and a day or so after the mammoth Mexican feast really, really fancied a nice earthy, creamy, slightly cheesy jerusalem artichoke gratin.

I didn't really have a recipe, but just sort of made it up as I went along (hence the slightly 'vaguity' below).  Generally speaking it was a huge success, I'd perhaps omit the sage leaves next time - they didn't harm it but I don't think they really added anything either.

No real measurements here I'm afraid as I failed to weigh the artichokes, I guess about 200g though.

Jerusalem Artichoke Gratin
Serves 2-4 (depending on how much you want for yourself really)

Jerusalem Artichokes
Truffle salt (optional)
A few sage leaves, finely chopped
2 smoked garlic cloves, sliced thinly
Knob of butter, diced
Grated Comté cheese (or Gruyere would work)
Freshly grated nutmeg
Single cream (I use the "fake" cream by Elmlea in a bid to convince myself that I'm not being quite so unhealty)
Panko breadcrumbs (or normal white breadcrumbs)
Freshly ground black pepper

Chop the Jerusalem artichokes into even sized chunks (but still quite large) but don't peel.  Simmer for 5-10 minutes until tender to the point of a sharp knive.  Drain and cool slightly until you can hadle them.  They should now be a lot easier to peel and then you can slice thinly.

Lightly grease as a shallow oven proof dish then add slices of the artichoke in one layer making sure there are as little gaps as possible.

Sprinkle in the truffle salt lightly if using (otherwise a little bit of normal salt), slices of garlic, and chopped sage.  Grate over a tiny amount of nutmeg.

Layer in more artichoke, top with a little more truffle salt and garlic then pour over some cream (so it is just covering the artichoke but not completely).  Sprinkle over the cheese and ground pepper and then top with the breadcrumbs.  Finally dot the cubes of butter all over the top.

Pop into a preheated over (at about 200) for about 20 mins or until golden & bubbling.

I served this with the sausages I'd also bought in the farmers market with some spinach sautéed in a tiny amount of olive oil with a little nutmeg and black pepper and a nice glass of red wine.  Yum!

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