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My intention was to make this entirely vegan – and I almost finished it vegan – but it came out of the oven looking very sad – because the vegan cheeses I used did not melt well & it was just a delicious-smelling but not pretty (really not pretty) thing that I could not post here & lure a single person to try it. If you are not vegan – use whatever cheeses you prefer and, if you are vegan, either use your favorite (and – hopefully – melty) mozzarella. I used real mozzarella in the last half hour of cooking time – which is why it has the golden, melted topping. But – had I not been under pressure to make it LOOK pretty – I would have left it vegan & just shoveled it into my face – because it really is yummy! And – when I am home & eating alone – WTF do I care what it looks like? So – vegan or not – I think you can modify this to suit your diets & have a yummy kale & potato gratin.
Creamy Kale & Potato Gratin (Vegan or Vegetarian)
Serves 6 as a side
1-2 TBS olive oil or coconut oil
1/2 large onion – diced
2-4 garlic cloves – chopped
1-3 jalapenos – diced (very, very optional – I just like spice so I used 3)
2 small heads of kale – ribs removed & chopped
10 small potatoes (or any combination – I used a mix) – sliced into 1/4″ slices
2 cups soy or almond or other milk
2/3 cup vegan sour cream
10 slices vegan cheese (I used 2 sharp cheddar slices & 8 Chao Original slices) or other grated cheeses (I used about 1 cup but more is always better and I would have used way more had I had it – but less is healthier so…your call)
1-2 cups grated vegan mozzarella (I used real mozzarella because I had it but my homemade vegan mozzarella would be great and it kinda melts!)
Heat the oven to 350 degrees.
Whisk the sour cream into the milk & set aside.
Heat the oil in a large saute pan. Cook the onions until soft & then add the kale, jalapenos (if using) and the garlic. I added a few TBS of water to aid in the wilting of the kale. You can do this or not – but simply cook until the kale is wilted & soft. Set aside.
Grease a casserole pan (I used olive oil Pam) and layer 1/3 of the potato slices in the bottom of the pan. Add 1/2 the kale & 1/3 of the non-mozzarella cheese. Add another 1/3 of the potato, the rest of the kale & another 1/3 of the non-mozzarella cheese. Top with remaining potato & non-mozzarella cheese. Pour the milk/sour cream blend over it all. I was a lazy whisker & my sour cream stayed lumpy. It looks bad but didn’t hurt the recipe. Add some S&P.
Cover with foil & bake for 1 hour.
Remove from oven & top with the grated mozzarella. Bake – uncovered – another 20-30 minutes or until the gratin is sorta firm & your cheese (especially if using real cheese) looks done. Non-melting vegan cheese might never look done – so – be careful not to overcook the gratin because it will dry out.