Fingerling Potato and Wild Mushroom Au Gratin

This is a tasty dish when feeding a large group and the ingredient amounts below will fit perfectly into a chaffing dish. If making this dish for a smaller group cut the recipe in half and use a typical baking dish about 8 inches x 12 inches. For a different version try Potato and Mixed Mushroom Au Gratin and this dish pairs well with Ham with a Honey Mustard Glaze.

Ingredients

2 cups of boiling water
2 – ½ oz. packages of wild mushrooms (shitake, crimini, and/or baby bella) reconstituted and cleaned well to remove grit
4 oz. of pancetta finely diced
¼ cup of olive oil
1 medium yellow onion minced
2 sprigs of fresh rosemary, stems removed and finely chopped
1 – 16 oz. container of fresh organic spinach, rinsed and drained
6 cubes of Dorot brand garlic or 6 cloves of garlic crushed through a garlic press or more depending on your taste
2 – 10 oz. cans of condensed cream of mushroom soup
1 cup of parmesan cheese
6 cups of half and half – blend of milk and cream
1 tablespoon of kosher salt
Pepper to taste
4 cups of packaged shredded mozzarella cheese
Non-stick spray
8 cups of fingerling potatoes thinly sliced (I bought a mixture that was about 5 pounds.)

Technique

Boil 1 cup of water and add dried wild mushrooms to reconstitute. This will take about 20 minutes. Strain mushrooms, discarding liquid and rinse mushrooms well to remove any grit that has gotten stuck in the crevices. Chop into small pieces.

In a small skillet over medium high heat, add finely chopped pancetta and cook until crisp. Remove and place into a small bowl with a paper towel to remove any excess grease.

In a large deep skillet or Dutch oven add olive oil and sauté onions until translucent. Add chopped mushrooms, rosemary and pancetta and sauté for one to two minutes until rosemary is fragrant. Add spinach, cover for about 30 seconds. Sauté, cover again for 30 seconds . Add the garlic, cream of mushroom soup, parmesan cheese, half and half and salt and pepper and stir to incorporate. Add cheese and stir until melted. In a large casserole dish, sprayed with non-stick spray, about 9 inches by 13 inches and 3 inches deep or a chaffing dish, ladle a small amount of the liquid on the bottom, evenly layering the potatoes with the mushroom mixture, until all potato slices are fully immersed in the liquid mixture. Bake in a preheated oven at 375 degrees for 1 hour or until potatoes are tender. Cooking times will vary depending on how thick the potatoes were sliced, the depth of your casserole dish or if you are using two casserole dishes as opposed to one large one. Let rest for 15 – 20 minutes before serving.

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