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French Potatoes

French Potatoes

Have you ever had real French potatoes? The ones the French who live in the Alps eat during the wintertime!

My mother got this recipe from a woman sitting next to her during a flight to Chicago many years ago. We’ve adapted it since then, but it is still essentially a French recipe!

Since this is a blog about French potatoes, the song needs to be French-esque. So take a listen to the instrumental “Afternoon in Paris” played by tenor saxophonist Sonny Rollins. The deep, warm tone of his saxophone makes the song!

French Potatoes


  • 6 large Yukon Gold potatoes
  • ½ cup grated gruyere cheese
  • ½ cup + 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
  • ½ cup grated Swiss cheese
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • ¾ cup heavy whipping cream


  1. Preheat oven to 325°.
  2. Wash potatoes. Cut out bad spots.
  3. On a cutting board, slice potatoes in half lengthwise. Then slice potatoes into 1/8-inch thick slices. Try to make sure they do not get any thicker than ¼-inch. Set aside.
  4. Set grated cheeses in three bowls next to all the thinly sliced potatoes.
  5. Measure black pepper.
  6. Peel cloves of garlic. Rub end of garlic on bottom and sides of a 9”x13” pan. Dice garlic cloves.
  7. In a measuring cup or bowl put entire amount of heavy whipping cream.
  8. Pour 2 tablespoons whipping cream onto the bottom of the pan. Using a slice of potato spread the cream around to the edges.
  9. Layer the potato slices one thickness to cover the bottom of the pan, overlapping each other slightly.
  10. Sprinkle gruyere over the potatoes. Sprinkle 1/4 teaspoon black pepper over cheese.
  11. Pour 2 tablespoons cream over cheese and pepper.
  12. Place another layer of potatoes.
  13. Sprinkle ½ cup Parmesan cheese over second layer of potatoes.
  14. Dividing diced garlic in half, sprinkle half amount over second layer of potatoes.
  15. Pour 2 tablespoons cream over Parmesan cheese and garlic.
  16. Place another layer of potatoes.
  17. Sprinkle Swiss cheese and remaining garlic over potatoes.
  18. Pour 2 tablespoons cream over Swiss cheese and garlic.
  19. Place the remaining potatoes in a layer over the top.
  20. Pour remaining cream evenly over potatoes.
  21. Press the potatoes in the middle down and slightly toward the edges so that there is not a mound.
  22. Sprinkle remaining 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese over the top.
  23. Bake uncovered for 25 minutes. Cover with foil for 10 minutes. Remove foil and bake for 15 minutes or until the potatoes are slightly crispy on top and tender.

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About Jillaine: As a professional jazz singer who also studies law, savoring daily nosh with family refreshes me. You are invited to my table to try great food, hear tasty music, and join in upbeat conversation!

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