Tag Archives: gruyere

Potato and Leek Au Gratin for Two

Cooking for two people sounds easy peasy, but in reality, it’s something altogether different. My three kids have been out of the house for a while now, but I still find myself cooking cisterns of soup and medium-sized farm animals for dinner. My default habit. Leftovers are a “thing” at our house these days, but I do keep trying.

I had some salad stuff in the fridge for a side, one russet potato, two leeks, a hunk of Gruyere, and heavy cream in the fridge, so I decided to try to pull off an au gratin for two. It worked! It was so yummy that we ate the WHOLE thing. We were using our fingers to wipe up every last smear of goodness. After we practically licked the dish clean, we thought maybe cooking this for two was a big mistake? You could always double the recipe J  

Preheat the oven to 425-degrees

Here’s the recipe:

1 ½ cups heavy cream

2 oz. grated Gruyere cheese

2 leeks, light green/white parts only

1 large russet potato

2 thyme sprigs

1 tbsp. EVOO

Kosher salt

Slice leeks in half and then julienne.

Rinse leeks well.

Saute leeks in EVOO until brown around the edges. Remove the thyme leaves from the sprigs and add to the leeks. Mix well. Remove from heat.

Peel the russet potato and slice with a mandolin (best to have uniform slices of potatoes or they’ll cook at different times).

Begin layering the potatoes in a small-ish pyrex dish (the size will depend upon the size of your potato). Sprinkle the salt between each layer.

Cover the top potato layer with the leeks and pour the heavy cream over the top. Slowly move the dish back and forth so that the cream migrates to all of the layers and to the bottom.

Cover the top of the leeks with the cheese.

Tent the top of the dish with aluminum foil so it’s not touching the cheese.

Bake in the oven for 1 hour.

Remove the aluminum foil and cook until the cheese is golden brown. Let it sit for 10 minutes before cutting into the cheese-y goodness!

Eat well!



Broccoli + Potato Soup with Gruyere Toasts

It’s been delightfully cool outside these past few weeks. Just when it was beginning to feel like that would never happen.

We had some peeps over for a casual dinner the other evening and soup was on the menu. You can see by the ingredients that this soup makes a great meal for tight budgets and is also perfect for meatless Mondays. Oh, and you could substitute the broccoli with cauliflower, too. 
This recipe makes enough for 6-8 as a first course, and there’s enough left over to stash some in the freezer for future meals.
Here’s what you’ll need for the soup –
1.5 lbs. Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and diced into large cubes
1.5 lbs. of broccoli. Chop broccoli stems into coins and set aside the broccoli florets.
1 med. onion roughly chopped
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and smashed
Zest and juice from one lemon
1 tbsp. coriander
1 tbsp. EVOO
3 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. Espelette pepper

Sweat the onion in 1 tbsp. EVOO until translucent. Add the coriander and garlic and cook until fragrant.

Add 6 cups of hot water, 1 tsp. of salt, diced potatoes, and the chopped broccoli stems. Simmer until the potatoes and coins are tender.

Add 2 cups more of water, broccoli florets, and 1 tsp. salt. Simmer until the florets are soft.
Using either an immersion blender or a regular blender, chop until mostly smooth. I like my soup a bit chunky, but the texture is up to you.
Add the last tsp. of salt, lemon juice, lemon zest, and Espelette pepper. Mix and heat again.
Here are the ingredients for the toasts –
Grated gruyere cheese, crème fraiche, and multi-grain bread. The amounts are up to you. Sprinkle with some finishing salt.


Smear the bread with crème fraiche and add some grated cheese. Put the toasts in the over on 400-degrees until the cheese is golden and bubbly. Enjoy!

Eat well, 


Cannellini Bean and Tomato Soup

Most of you are aware of the nasty glioblastoma business that Roger’s been courageously battling. He had been 18 months cancer free (well, as cancer free as one can be with GBM), and a little over a week ago a suspicious area was noted on his routine MRI. Grrr. Let me tell you people that there’s nothing scarier than receiving a phone call from one’s neuro-oncologist with a message to come into the office as soon as possible. First, you pick your stomach up off the floor, and then you get into the car and drive soundlessly to said clinic.

Surgery is over, and my Superman is home. We’re waiting patiently for the full pathology report, and we remain hopeful. Because I find expressing love with my Shun chef’s knife the fastest way possible, I decided to cook up some comfort food for his first meal home after surgery: tomato soup and grilled cheese. We’ll go back to eating oodles of kale and beaucoup veggies soon enough. Now was the time to deliver joy through food.

This soup recipe will serve 6



1-28 oz. can of whole tomatoes (San Marzano are preferred)

32 oz. chicken stock

1-15 oz. can of cannellini beans

1 onion, diced small

¾ oz. whipping cream

2 tbsp. EVOO

3 garlic cloves

1 Parmesan rind

A pinch of saffron

¼ tsp. chili pepper flakes

½ tsp. kosher salt

Ground pepper

basil for garnish


In a 5-qt. pan, sauté the onion in EVOO until soft and translucent. Add the garlic, chili flakes, and saffron threads to the onion and heat until fragrant (you don’t want to burn the garlic).

Squish the tomatoes with your hands until they’re fully broken down.

Add the tomatoes and stock to the onion mixture.

Pop in the Parmesan rind and simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes.


Add the cannellini beans, salt, pepper, and whipping cream. Stir well and taste. Add more seasoning if you like.


Cheese Panini

Grate some Gruyere cheese (amount is personal preference)

I used a seeded bread (sliced it at home) from Whole Foods

Toast the sandwich in a panini press (my method of choice), or on a frying pan with a weight on top of the sandwich

Toast the sandwich until the bread is crunchy and the cheese is fully melted (grating helps it melt faster)

Eat well!


“Cancer is a word, not a sentence.” – John Diamon