Super lean but still full of flavour – Potato and Leek Gratin With Dill and White Wine


 One of the few things I miss of Sweden is dill, one of the freshest herb that I know and I don’t mean fresh as in new but fresh flavour wise. The taste of dill is something I closely associate with Swedish summer, days and nights filled with light and small new potatoes. I realize that I have a bit of a fixation on new potatoes, growing up with a mother who always grew her own potatoes so that she could eat the delikatessen new potatoes every year does leave signs; I can see her now, bending over the potato rows with her strong and big hands stuck into the soil, and then how she triumphantly held up a handful of small, dirty potatoes as if she had found gold!


Yes yes yes, potatoes but what has that to do with dill? Well, throwing some dill  into the water when you boil potatoes is a great way to make them taste even better but you find dill in many other dishes as well. But, and this is one of my few buts about Italy, I never managed to find dill in all these years I have been living here. I don’t mind that much really, it is always good to have something to indulge in when I go back to Sweden but I was very happy when Neva, one of the food stylists I work with gave me a large bunch of dill to bring home from Milan.

Potatoe and Leek Gratin With Dill and White Wine

I have been thinking about this super lean potato gratin for some time now, using stock and white wine instead of milk and cream, and planning to do it when I had some more time to spend in the kitchen – guess if the dill I got went straight into it or not? The ingredients in this dish are few and I suspect that you have already most of them at home. You can use another herb or no herb at all if you cannot find dill but do try to find some. 
I used quite a lot of stock and wine so the first portion of the gratin I ate as a soup, not a bad idea at all actually and I think I will experiment a bit further on making soup in the oven, keep your eyes open.

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4 servings
1 kg/2,2 lb potatoes
1 leek
4-5 tbsp finely chopped fresh dill or some other herb
450 ml/ 1,9 cup light stock 
300 ml/ 1,25 cup white wine
extra-virgin olive oil
   Peel the potatoes, trim the leek and slice them thinly.  Heat up stock and white wine.
   Grease an oven-proof form and start filling it with layers, first a layer of potato slices, then leek and to finish a sprinkle of chopped dill. Go on like this until the form is filled.
   Pour stock and wine over the potatoes until almost covered (if you want a dryer version, pour just until half of the potatoes are covered and bake under cover for the first 15 minutes) and bake in a pre-heated oven (200°C/390°F) for 25-30 minutes or until the potatoes are soft and golden on top.

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