Some dishes outlive trends. Gratin is a classic dish that has been a family favorite for years. In its most common form, gratin includes cheese, cream and potatoes. Every season it seems there is a new version, adding something unusual like a different cheese, less or more cream, a new vegetable, meat or without meat. Chefs and home cooks take this warm comforting dish and get a little creative.
This gratin, chock-full of asparagus and chicken, has just a little cheese and can be made with skim milk, making it a little less heavy than other versions. And since this iteration doesn’t have potatoes, asparagus, which is perfectly in season right now, is the star of the show.
When you go to the store to select fresh asparagus here are some helpful tips. Look for asparagus spears that are firm to the touch and bright green in color. The tips should be closed tight, with a nice dark green or purple tinge. If the tips are yellowish or dried out, that's an indication that the asparagus are not fresh. The diameter of the asparagus actually doesn't matter except for in the presentation of your dish. The thicker asparagus will weigh more and cost more but it will not affect the flavor.
Do you have a go-to gratin recipe? If so, do share what it is!