One of the dishes Dan & I served up at the September 6 Underground Kitchen (you can read all about it in yesterday’s post below) was a Gorgonzola Potato Gratin.
Gratin was adapted from French cuisine is a type of casserole dish that is covered with Béchamel sauce or Mornay sauce, topped with buttered breadcrumbs or grated cheese and either baked or boiled, then served in its baking dish with a golden crust. Cooking au gratin is a technique rather than exclusively a preparation of potatoes (which is specifically a gratin dauphinois): anything that can be sliced thin, layered with a cream sauce and baked is material for a gratin.
The name gratin dauphinois refers to the Dauphiné region of France, where this method of preparing potatoes is a specialty. The ingredients composing a typical gratin dauphinois are thinly sliced and layered potatoes, milk (and/or cream or creme fraiche), cheese, garlic, salt and pepper.
My potato gratin would be the base of a plate also showcasing beef tenderloin, chimichurri sauce and breaded asparagus. I wanted a creamy gratin that would not compete with the other flavors on the plate. An important component of chimichurri is garlic, so I did not want to overdo it by adding garlic to the gratin as well. I opted to keep it simple and classic.
- Can you see the relief on our faces?
Now that we’ve had a few days to recuperate, we’d like to tell you all about our fabulous experience as Chefs for Underground Kitchen III on September 6.
As you will recall, Dan, Tracey, Ron and I attended UK II at the Habitat for Humanity ReStore back in July. (You can read about that one here and here.) A delicious meal was served in a unique atmosphere among a varied group of friendly strangers. We had a great time. So much so, it only took a mention by the UK organizers that they were looking for chefs for the next event to trigger the start gun of my mind…racing with thoughts of what I might like to serve, what my ideal location would be….
And so we did it. We volunteered. Continue reading
Underground Kitchen – Charleston, WV
I have said to several people that the internet has made the world a smaller place, but at the expense of our own communities. People are more likely to have a friend in a different state or country, but don’t even know their neighbors. Every Tuesday I Skype with friends from FL, CT, IN, AR, DC and Australia. When were setting up the Fork You blog a couple months ago, I added links to several food related sites. One of those sites was Kitchen Geeking. It was an interesting, local, food related blog. I subscribed to the feed and one day this thing called Underground Kitchen popped up in my Google Reader. It was a little like Dinner: Impossible, but for the guests. Initially I thought it was a group of trendy East Enders and getting an invitation would be as easy as getting your beverage order taken at the Power Alley Grill so I put it out of my mind. Then a website popped up, followed by a blog and then chatter on the Twitter. Continue reading