Potato Gratin

Servings : Serves 4-6

A succulent creamy side dish that goes well with most meaty dishes or can be had on it’s own with a side salad. I normally serve this with roast chicken.


  • 500 gm potatoes, peeled and sliced (half a cm thickness)
  • 2 1/2 cups milk (500 ml)
  • 2 tbsp. (leveled) plain flour
  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1-2 tsp. black pepper powder
  • 1/4 tsp. garlic paste
  • 1/4 cup cream
  • 1 cup grated mozzarella or cheddar cheese
  • chopped green or red chilli or chilli flakes (if you want a spicy kick)
  • chopped coriander or herbs of your preference


Put the peeled and sliced potatoes in a deep pan and cover with water. Sprinkle some salt. Bring to the boil and stand by. As soon as the water boils, give it 20-30 seconds, then turn off the heat and drain out all the water and set the potatoes aside. The potato slices will look slightly transparent in appearance but not fully cooked. This is called blanching.  It cuts down on the baking time later and helps ensure the potatoes suck up the lovely white sauce properly.

Next, you can begin preparing the white sauce.  Melt butter in a saucepan, stir in plain flour, then cook on low heat for 5 minutes.  Cooking the flour in the butter helps reduce the ‘raw’ smell of the flour so don’t skip this step!  Add the garlic, salt and pepper.  Then slowly whisk in the milk.  If you pour milk in too quickly you will form lumps, so add gradually while whisking briskly to get rid of any lumps and form a smooth roux/mixture.  Then bring to a boil, while stirring.  Turn down heat and cook until the sauce starts to thicken and coats the back of a wooden spoon.  Add the cream and give it another final boil.  Taste and adjust salt/pepper.  Turn off the heat and set aside.

Butter a 9×11 pyrex dish, then pour a spoonful of the white sauce and spread it to cover the bottom of the dish.  This bottom layer of sauce helps make sure your potatoes are yummy down to the last bite and prevents them from sticking to the bottom of the dish. Add half of the blanched potato slices. Now pour half of the white sauce.  Sprinkle some red chilli flakes/chopped chillies and herbs.  Layer the remainder of the potato slices followed by all remaining white sauce.  Level everything up and sprinkly some more herbs if you like.  Now scatter the grated cheese all over the top.

Preheat your oven at 180C.  Bake the gratin uncovered for approx. 20-30 mins or until the top is golden and potatoes are tender.

Serve warm with accompaniments of your choice.


9 thoughts on “Potato Gratin
9 Replies
  • Hi. This is the second or
    Hi. This is the second or third time I am making this… First 1-2 times it was a similar recipe, n yesterday it was this.
    The thing is, one problem keeps recurring. After baking, it becomes quite watery/runny from inside. As if the white sauce just melted (it was thick when I layered it), or as if the potatoes released water.
    I use my microwave on convection mode when baking, but don’t usually encounter any problems (except that it takes things twice as long to get done).
    What could be the reason? Or is it supposed to be this way?

    • Hi, that sounds so strange.
      Hi, that sounds so strange. Seems like the white sauce separated although am not really sure why that happened since you mentioned the sauce was thick when you layered. Do you drain the potatoes well? What kind of milk do you use for the sauce?

      • Yes, I did drain the potatoes
        Yes, I did drain the potatoes well.
        I used skimmed milk this time, but I don’t think that makes a difference because as far as I remember, previously I used full-cream milk and the same thing happened.
        I think the problem may be over-baking/heating…
        I have another idea in mind now; if it works, I’ll let you know!

        • I use skim milk all the time
          I use skim milk all the time for my sauce just to keep it a little bit healthier, so am sure that isn’t it. But I really look forward to finding out the cause if you manage to figure it out! Thanks for giving the recipe another shot. 🙂

Leave a Reply