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Creamy Potato-Leek Gratin

Prep: 25 minutes plus standing
Bake: 40 minutes • Serves: 8

2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons unsalted butter
3 medium leeks (about 2 pounds), white and light green parts only, each cut lengthwise in half, then thinly sliced crosswise, rinsed and drained well (about 4 cups)
2-1/2 teaspoons salt
4 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes (about 9 medium)
1 pint (2 cups) heavy whipping cream
3 garlic cloves, crushed with press
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
1 pinch ground nutmeg
8 ounces Gruyère cheese, shredded (2 cups)

1. Preheat oven to 400°. Grease 13 x 9-inch glass or ceramic baking dish with 2 teaspoons butter.

2. In large skillet, melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter over medium-high heat. Add leeks and 1/2 teaspoon salt; cover and cook 14 to 16 minutes or until leeks are very soft and start to brown, stirring occasionally; transfer leeks to bowl.

3. Meanwhile, peel and thinly slice potatoes; place in large bowl.

4. Into same skillet, add cream, garlic, pepper, nutmeg and remaining 2 teaspoons salt; heat to simmering over medium-high heat. Pour hot cream mixture over potatoes and gently stir to coat.

5. Spoon a small amount of cream onto bottom of prepared dish. Evenly layer half the potato-cream mixture into the dish; evenly top with half the leek mixture and 3/4 cup cheese. Repeat layers with remaining potato-cream mixture, leek mixture and 1-1/4 cups cheese.

6. Cover dish with aluminum foil; pull back a corner of foil to vent. Bake gratin 25 minutes. Remove foil and bake 15 minutes longer or until potatoes are very tender when knife is inserted in center and top is golden brown. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Approximate nutritional values per serving:
534 Calories, 33g Fat (22g Saturated),
122mg Cholesterol, 887mg Sodium,
42g Carbohydrates, 6g Fiber, 14g Protein