- 2 ½ pounds of Yukon gold potatoes —try to find BIG ones of a uniform size.
- 3 cups heavy cream (you may need a little more)
- 2 large eggs
- 8 oz grated Gruyere Cheese (use larger size shredder on a box grater)
- 2 large sprigs of fresh thyme (or about a teaspoon of dried thyme)
- 2 large cloves of garlic
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- Nutmeg—a piece you will use to grate to taste
- 2 to 3 tablespoons of butter to grease the baking dish
Peel potatoes and place into a bowl of cold water. Taking one potato out of the water at a time, slice each one into 1/4 slices. Place potato slices back into the bowl of cold water (since it will take some time to cut all of the potatoes, the water will keep them from getting brown right away.) Repeat until you have sliced all of the potatoes. (If you want to save time, you can slice the potatoes on a slicer or with your food processor.)
Pour the cream into a large saucepan over low heat. Smash one clove of garlic with the flat side of the knife. Scrape up the smashed garlic and place into the saucepan with the cream. Allow the cream to start simmering.
Hold the first sprig of thyme over the saucepan and remove all of the leaves by running your thumb and forefinger along the stem, removing all of the leaves and letting them fall into the cream. Repeat with the second sprig. Grate the piece of nutmeg over the saucepan (about 6-7 times) on a microplane (remember not to over do the nutmeg as you don’t want the sauce to be overwhelmed with nutmeg flavor).
Place the sliced potatoes into the simmering cream mixture, until potatoes are just covered. Add more cream or milk if you need to in order to cover the potatoes. Bring potatoes and cream to a boil. Remove pan from heat, cover with lid or aluminum foil and let potatoes steep for 15 minutes.
After 15 minutes, using a slotted spoon, remove the potatoes from the cream mixture and set aside. Strain as much of the thyme leaves and crushed garlic from the cream as you can. Set aside the cream mixture and bring to from temperature.
When the cream mixture is room temperature (make sure that is not warm), mix in the two beaten eggs. Butter the baking dish with 2-3 tablespoons of butter.
Carefully layer half of the sliced potatoes on the bottom of the dish. Sprinkle 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper and a pinch of nutmeg and 4 oz of the Gruyere cheese. Repeat the layers. The cream mixture should just cover the potatoes, do not totally submerge them (you may have some leftover cream).
Bake, uncovered in a 350° oven for about 35-50 minutes or until they are cooked all the way through and there is a golden brown crust on top.