Even if you’re not hosting a dinner party, simply bringing a dish can be pretty intimidating for those who aren’t used to spending time in the kitchen. Frankly, certain attendees make it intimidating for even the most experienced cooks. Instead of admitting defeat by picking up a loaf of bread, throw together a gratin. They’re simple to make, look impressive, and taste fantastic. If you show up with any of these seven recipes, you’ll be hearing compliments all night.
1. Potato-Apple Gratin
Anyone who enjoys savory-sweet combinations will go nuts for Real Simple’s cheesy apple and potato gratin. It’s easy to assemble, but the slicing does take a little bit of time. For the best results, use a mandolin to slice the potatoes and apples. Just watch your fingers because the blades are extremely sharp.
- 3 eggs
- 3 cups buttermilk
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- ⅛ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 2 pounds baking potatoes, peeled and cut into ⅛-inch-thick slices
- 2 pounds unpeeled Granny Smith apples, cut into ⅛-inch-thick slices
- 1 pound Swiss cheese, shredded
- ¼ pound Parmesan cheese, grated
Directions: Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Coat a 3½-quart casserole with nonstick cooking spray. In a medium bowl, whisk eggs, buttermilk, thyme, salt, and pepper to combine. Set aside.
Arrange a layer of overlapping potatoes in bottom of casserole, then repeat with apples. Sprinkle with one-third of each cheese and top with one-third of egg mixture. Repeat layering two more times.
Cover with foil and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Remove foil and bake 15 minutes longer, or until potatoes are fully tender and top is golden. Serve.