3 pounds potatoes (You can use russets or a yellow waxy potato, such as Yukon Gold).
1 quart whole milk
Freshly grated nutmeg
Sea salt to taste
2 T butter
1 c heavy cream
2 c freshly grated Gruyere cheese
Freshly ground pepper to taste
1 clove fresh garlic, halved lengthwise
You will also need:
Large baking dish
Preheat the oven to 375oF (190oC).
Peel and thinly slice the potatoes. In a large saucepan, combine the potatoes, milk, nutmeg, salt and 1 tablespoon of the butter. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. (You should stir occasionally to keep the potatoes from sticking to the bottom of the pan). Reduce the heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, until the potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes.
Combine ½ cup of the cream and 1 cup of the cheese. Stir to blend.
Rub the bottom of the baking dish with the garlic and the remaining tablespoon of butter. Using a slotted spoon, transfer half of the potatoes to the baking dish. Sprinkle with more nutmeg, pepper, the remaining ½ cup of cream and the remaining cup of cheese. Cover with the remaining potatoes and sprinkle again with nutmeg and pepper. Cover with the reserved topping mixture. Discard the milk. Place the baking dish in the center of the oven and bake until the potatoes are crisp and golden on top, about an hour. Serve while hot.
Note: You can add herbs to the milk during the cooking of the potatoes to give an extra zip to this dish. Discard the herbs with the milk. Serves 8.