Photo © Lucy Lean, Made in America, 2010, used with permission.

sweet potato gratin
serves 6-8

cheese sauce

2 cup heavy cream
6 oz smokey bleu cheese, chopped
½ tsp chili flakes
½ tsp brown sugar
1 ½ tsp salt

1. in a sauce pot with a heavy bottom, bring the cream to almost a simmer.
2. slowly add the bleu cheese while whisking until just incorporated.
3. whisk in the chili flakes, brown sugar & salt.
4. remove from heat & reserve.

to assemble

2 ½ lbs sweet potato, peeled & thinly sliced on mandolin
7 oz crispy fried onion
salt to taste

1. toss the potato slices with a pinch of salt.
2. lay 1/3 of the potato slices down in the bottom of a casserole dish and top with 1/3 of the cheese sauce. sprinkle with 1/4th of the onions. repeat to form 3 layers.
3. bake in preheated oven at 300 degrees for about 45 minutes covered and an additional 15 minutes uncovered. cook until the cream has reduced, thickened & gratin is set.
4. remove from oven and finish with the remaining crispy fried onions.

crispy fried onions
yield: 7oz

1 ea sweet onion, thinly sliced on mandolin
6tb corn starch
6tb corn flour
salt to taste
frying oil

1. lay onions between towels and allow them to dry for about an hour.
2. in a large rondeaux, pre-heat frying oil to 275 degrees.
3. in a small bowl, whisk corn starch and corn flour together. set aside.
4. toss onions in powder mixture. then, using a fine mash bowl strainer, remove excess powder mixture.
5. slowly drop coated onions in hot oil and cook until golden, while stirring constantly, or for approximately 5 minutes.
6. remove fried onions from oil, and set aside on a cooling rack or a dry towel to remove excess oil.
7. season with salt.