Shiitake mushroom and Yukon gold potato gratins with fresh herbs

October 27, 2011

Shiitake mushroom and Yukon gold potato gratins

Deeply flavorful yet not too rich, these gratins make a delicious appetizer. But you can also serve them, with a couple of side vegetables, as a main course for a dinner party or a holiday meal.

To get the maximum flavor out of the shiitake mushrooms, you’ll want to sauté them until golden-brown. The trick is to cook them at high heat and to not stir them too often as they cook (see the tips below the recipe).

As for the fresh herbs, toss them with the mushrooms for a few seconds only to preserve their exquisite aromas.

When you make these gratins, I think you’ll agree they’re as delectable as they are comforting.

Red wine iconA Pinot Noir is delectable with these gratins. How about a Pinot from the Russian River Valley in northern California?

Shiitake mushroom and yukon gold potato gratins

Shiitake mushroom and Yukon gold potato gratins with fresh herbs

serves 8
active time: 45 min

For the mushrooms

  1. 12 sprigs fresh Italian parsley – stems removed
  2. 8 sprigs thyme – leaves removed from stems
  3. 2 sprigs winter savory or rosemary – leaves removed from stems
  4. 2 large garlic cloves – skinned and finely chopped
  5. 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  6. 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  7. 1 1/2 lbs (680 g) fresh shiitake mushrooms – stems trimmed and cut in 1/8″ slices
  8. 2 large shallots – skinned, quartered and finely sliced
  9. 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  10. freshly ground black pepper to taste

For the gratins

  1. 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  2. 1/2 cup heavy cream
  3. 1/4 teaspoon sea salt to taste
  4. freshly ground black pepper to taste
  5. 1 lb (455 g) medium Yukon Gold potatoes – unpeeled, cut in 1/8″ slices (use mandoline or blade attachment of food processor)
  6. 4 oz (115 g) coarsely grated cave-aged gruyère (1 1/2 cups)
  1. 8 half-cup-capacity ramequins – lightly buttered

  1. Step 1: Place the herbs and the garlic in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until very finely chopped. Alternatively, place the herbs and garlic on a cutting board and finely chop. Set aside.
  2. Step 2: Heat a large non-stick skillet to high heat. Add the butter and oil. As soon as the butter is melted, add the mushrooms. Toss well and sauté for 6 to 8 minutes until golden, stirring only occasionally (see Viviane’s Tip below). Add the shallots and continue to sauté for 2 minutes until shallots have softened. Add the herb/garlic mixture, salt and pepper and continue to sauté for 30 seconds. Remove from heat and transfer to a bowl to cool slightly.
  3. Pre-heat oven to 375°F (190°C).
  4. Step 3: Whisk the milk, cream, salt and pepper in a small bowl and set aside. Place a third of the potato slices at the bottom of each ramequin, enough to cover the surface. Top with half the mushrooms. Then top with a third of the potato slices. Top again with half the mushrooms and finish with the balance of the potato slices. Drizzle with the milk mixture. Sprinkle with the grated cheese. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes until golden and bubbly. Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes before serving. Serve the gratins in their molds.
  5. Cook’s note 1: To make ahead – Although they’re best eaten the day they are made, the gratins can be baked for 40 minutes until just golden, then cooled and refrigerated up to 1 day. To serve, bring to room temperature and bake at 375°F (190°C) for 6 to 8 minutes until bubbling at the sides.
  6. Cook’s note 2: If you prefer to make a large gratin rather than individual ones, use a medium ceramic or glass baking dish. Layer the ingredients exactly as described above and bake at 375°F (190°C) for 45 to 50 minutes.

gratin, yukon gold potatoes, shiitake mushrooms

Viviane’s Tips

Shiitake mushroom stems

Don’t throw away the shiitake stems. Although they’re fibrous and inedible, they’re still full of that delicious mushroom flavor. Place them in a ziplock bag and freeze them. You can use them later for making stocks, like this versatile and flavorful vegetable stock.

Sautéed shiitake mushrooms with fresh herbs

Cooking mushrooms can be a bit tricky. Here are a few rules to follow:

1. Always work with a heavy-bottomed non-stick pan.
2. Cook the mushrooms at high heat so that their moisture evaporates quickly. This will prevent them from becoming soggy.
3. Don’t stir the mushrooms continuously. Give them a chance to get a lovely golden color before you stir them. At first, stir every two minutes. Halfway through the cooking, when the pan gets hotter and the mushrooms have lost a lot of their moisture, you’ll need to stir once every minute or so.

By following these simple rules, you should be able to get beautiful, golden-brown mushrooms.

© 2014 Viviane Bauquet Farre Food & Style NY LLC

Disclaimer: As always, my point of view is my own. I do not accept samples, and have no commercial relationship with any product, food or wine company.

{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

Jill | Dulce Dough October 27, 2011 at 2:06 pm

This dish looks amazing! Thank you for your wonderful recipe and your great tips!

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Cucina49 October 27, 2011 at 2:59 pm

Those are really wonderful looking–what a terrific autumn side dish!

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Hester aka The Chef Doc October 27, 2011 at 3:17 pm

Mmm! Mushrooms and potatoes! Yay!

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Sandra October 27, 2011 at 4:01 pm

Great tips for cooking mushrooms. Dishes like these are great on their own, no meat required.

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Mama's Gotta Bake October 27, 2011 at 4:50 pm

Love the photos. Love the dish too, I’m always looking for a good side dish, this one’s perfect!

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Kelly October 27, 2011 at 7:44 pm

Viviane, these are fantastic. I was just mentioning to another blogging friend how this cold weather is putting me in the mood for warm mushrooms, and here I see shiitake coming alive in your gorgeous gratins! Your herbs are wonderful and gruyere the perfect topping choice.

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Elies_Lie October 27, 2011 at 8:55 pm

Looks lovely to have this at breakfast or appetizer, I loves shitake mushrooms! ;)

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Anna October 27, 2011 at 10:49 pm

Thanks a lot for pposting this gratin recipe. A pat on the back for sharing the cooking tips. Very helpful indeed! :)

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Parsley Sage October 28, 2011 at 9:16 am

Ooooh! I LOVE this recipe :) Thanks for the tip with the Shiitake mushrooms too. Food is so expensive in Cayman, you want to get the biggest flavor bang for your buck! Buzzed

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Viviane October 28, 2011 at 10:47 am

Thank you for your wonderful comments everyone! So glad you love the gratins! I’ll be making them again this weekend as I’m working on a wine pairing for them… Very excited about that!

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Tiffany October 29, 2011 at 11:28 am

Delicious does not even BEGIN to describe how amazing these gratins look!

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Emily Lynne {The Best of this Life} October 29, 2011 at 3:14 pm

Yummy! What a delicious gratin….I love shitake mushrooms – this must taste divine!

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Grubarazzi (@Grubarazzi) October 29, 2011 at 5:51 pm

This is simply amazing. I would eat ten of them.

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1recette 1minute November 2, 2011 at 7:01 pm

I love your recipe, it’s a wonderful gratin:)

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Liz November 12, 2011 at 8:24 am

Wow, these sound amazing!!! Love the individual servings…so lovely.

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Carmen Brissette Grayson March 17, 2012 at 5:32 pm

Another recipe which I have made several times and it never fails to do its little dazzle. I have only one problem in translating the “sprigs,” though. The 12 sprigs of parsley aren’t a big issue but I really need a more specific measure for the rosemary because, as you know, it’s a pushy flavor and if it gets too out whack in proportion to the other seasoning can lose out.

Can you guide me a bit? Love your recipes and once I find a favorite I don’t let go, e.g., garlic confit/arugola and this shiitaki gratin. Merci milles.

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Viviane March 17, 2012 at 6:28 pm

Dear Carmen, The rosemary sprigs should be about 6″ long (which is the average length for sprigs you buy at the supermarket). Once you’ve removed the leaves from the stems, you should have a little over 1 tablespoon worth. I hope that helps. You are right that rosemary is a very pungent herb and one needs to be measured when using it. Thank you again for your kind words. You have no idea how delighted I am to know you enjoy making two of my most favorite recipes… Wishing you a delicious weekend!

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Carmen Brissette Grayson March 18, 2012 at 12:07 pm

I am so grateful that you replied so quickly. Yes, the tablespoon clue is exactly what I needed. Whole Foods doesn’t always carry the tall sprigs but often only the folded stems that have to be contorted into the plastic package.

While on the subject of the gratin–and I’m asking because I want to serve this dish as a company staple–the mandolin cuts the potatoes too thinly (maybe it’s my quirky instrument ) so I have been slicing the potatoes by hand. My problem is (hate to admit such ignorance) I am losing a sense of the best potato-to-gratin ingredients. What amount of potatoes should I be ending up with ? BUT no matter how many mistakes I make (I.e., rosemary/potato issues) the dish tastes stupendously luscious. It’s just that I want to be more consistent before trying the dish with the ramekins. Hugs to you and Marc.

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Viviane March 18, 2012 at 5:12 pm

Dear Carmen, You are so adorable! And I see that you are a careful cook too – a wonderful attribute. I would say that it is better for the potatoes to be sliced too thin rather than two thick. If you have a food processor, perhaps you have a slicing attachement that would cut the potatoes at 1/8″? If not, continue slicing by hand and try to make the slices as thin as possible. It’s hard for me to say what the ratio should be… rather make sure you have the right amount of potatoes (1 1/2lbs). Hugs back to you my dear!

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