Potato & Leek Gratin with Pancetta

Yield 6
RECIPE Ingredients
  • 3½ tablespoons black truffle butter, divided use
  • 4 ounces ventrèche or pancetta, ¼” dice
  • 1 large leek, white and light green parts only
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken stock
  • 1½ pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 thyme sprigs
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • ¾ cup grated Gruyère or Comte cheese
  • ½ cup panko breadcrumbs
Recipe notes
Try this easy recipe for creamy potato and leek gratin with crispy pancetta. The leeks and ventrèche add extra flavor and texture to classic scalloped potatoes.
RECIPE Preparation
  1. Grease a 13x9” baking dish with ½ tablespoon of truffle butter. Set aside.
  2. Slice the leek in half lengthwise and rinse thoroughly, removing any grit in between the layers. Drain well then slice crosswise into ¼ inch strips. Set aside.
  3. In a medium skillet over medium heat, cook the ventrèche until rendered and crispy. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Return the pan to medium-high heat; add a tablespoon of truffle butter. Add leeks and cook, scraping up any browned bits in the pan, until softened. Remove from heat. Add ventrèche to the leeks and set aside.
  4. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  5. To a pot over medium heat, stir together heavy cream and chicken stock. Using a mandolin, slice the potatoes right into the cream mixture. Add garlic, thyme, bay leaf, and nutmeg. Season with salt and pepper. Cook until potatoes have softened a bit but still hold together, about 15 minutes.
  6. Transfer one third of the potatoes and cream to the prepared pan and level with a spoon then add half of the leeks mixture. Repeat one more time, then top with the remaining potatoes and cream. Cover with foil and bake until potatoes are cooked through and cream has absorbed and thickened, about 25 minutes. Meanwhile, melt remaining truffle butter. In a bowl, mix together truffle butter, breadcrumbs, and grated cheese.
  7. Remove foil, sprinkle breadcrumb and cheese mixture evenly over the potatoes. Bake until top is golden brown and bubbly. Remove from oven and cool slightly (dish will thicken as it cools) then serve.