Imagine layers of buttery, creamy, cheesy, garlicky beets, turnips and sweet potatoes baked to a tender golden brown with a hint of thyme. Go make it!
Little towers of power with bold flavors of butter, garlic and thyme make these roots au gratin stand out and take center stage on your plate. Made with three special roots vegetables — turnips, beets and sweet potatoes. Each one has a unique flavor. Which one will emerge as your favorite?
If your watching your lectins, this side dish is perfectly compliant without sacrificing your gourmet standards. But I'll let you in on a little secret. These little, individual au gratin towers are a lot easier to make than the traditional potato dish. Made in a muffin tin without the tedious layering of ingredients, these are a lot less work and faster to the plate and ultimately in your mouth. Read on to see how they're made.
Roots Au Gratin
1 Sweet Potato
1/4 C Italian Parmesan
1/4 C Grassfed White Cheddar
1/2 C Grassfed Half & Half
2 T Grassfed Butter
1 Clove Garlic minced
1 T Red Onion chopped
1 t Salt
1/4 t Black Pepper
1 t Fresh Thyme Leaves chopped
More Sprigs of Fresh Thyme for garnish
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a muffin tin (12 holer). Peel your root vegetables. With a mandolin slicer, slice all your root veggies thinly (1/8 inch) and uniformly and round as possible. I find that if you give the roots one-quarter turn after each slice, you won't end up with oval slices. Keep the slices of the same diameter together. You may need to trim some of the larger slices to fit into the muffin tin. Stack the root slices into the muffin tins about 3/4 full.
Next, grate cheeses into a small bowl and blend them with your fingers. Now take a pinches of cheese and hide them in a few layers of each stack. You need not get cheese in every layer. I try to get about every 2 or 3 layers. Make sure you have cheese on the top layer.
Next, make the creamy sauce. In a pourable, glass measuring cup add cream, butter, onion, garlic, salt, pepper, and chopped thyme. Microwave for about one minute until butter is melted. Swirl cream mixture together, then pour about 1 T over each stack. Bake for 40 minutes until nicely browned and crispy on top and edges. You can add a little more parmesan on top after you take them out of the oven.
Plate and garnish fresh thyme. The go great pork or beef. Shown here with a broiled grassfed New York strip and asparagus.
Serve with glass of pinot grigio. Enjoy!