04 October 2009

Falling for fall.

Fall is lovely. It really is. And I've had a special request from my no. 1 west coast fan for some images of the season. Just a few for now, but I'll be sure to keep 'em coming! (Unfortunately, it's been nothing but rain for days.)

Rain rain and more rain; first pumpkins of the year; turning the heat on (ick!); can anyone resist spooky cereal?

Once the weather turns cold, you start thinking about winter meals. Earlier this week I was mulling over dinner menus, and I decided to throw together a gratin with the potatoes I keep forgetting I have in my cupboard. I've never really made a gratin, so I used this Smitten Kitchen recipe as a guideline.

Who needs a mandoline? That's right. Me.

I decided on a goat cheese center.
I also used lots of sage.

And cream instead of milk and butter.

I cooked the gratin for 30 minutes before pulling it out to give it a little smoosh. That 30 minutes, and the following 30, were delicious torture. The smell was amazing. I credit the goat cheese.


Done. Finally time to eat!

Paired with a salad to offset the cheese and cream.

Killed it.

As is slightly unusual for me, for a first-time recipe, I loved this. And I wouldn't change a thing, recipe wise. I knew it was just for me and Brad, and we didn't need leftovers for his lunch, so I made it on the thin size (and was sick of slicing potatoes). The finished gratin only had three layers of potatoes and, as you can see, we ate almost the entire thing in one sitting. This could easily be doubled, or tripled, to make a thicker, more substantial dish. I have many memories of eating scalloped potatoes growing up, and I don't know why cheesy potatoes have never really made it into my dinner repertoire. I think I need to change that.

PS. I've spent the past month or so working on a top-secret knitting project for Melissa's big 30th bday. A matching ivory set of slouchy beret and loopy scarf. Great projects for me because they forced me to learn new things (slip stitch, bind off) and both were fun to make -- even when I had to buy different yarn and do half-assed math to figure out how to reformulate the scarf pattern. I finally got to deliver her gift last night, and I think she looks lovely in her new hat (the scarf is the same color and is a connecting loop that twists and fits twice around the neck).

PSS. This post was written from the comfort of my Snuggie. Yeah, you heard me.

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