Dauphinoise is one of the easiest and tastiest dishes to prepare and, for some reason, is often misconstrued as complicated. It can be done quickly, although actual cooking time can be lengthy, depending on the size of your dish.
1. Take enough potatoes to fill your cooking dish, a flat bottomed dish or Gratin dish is best. Skin and slice the potatoes into roughly 2-4mm slices. Fill a large bowl with water and add a generous helping of salt. Place the sliced potatoes in the bowl and soak for 15 minutes, stirring every five. The foam that accumulates on the top is Starch and can be scooped off with a spoon.
2. Boil a large pan of water and place the sliced potatoes in, cook for 7-8 minutes or until slightly undercooked.
3. Once cooked, drain most of the boiling water and fill back up with cold water. This stops the potatoes cooking as much and also makes them handle able when laying them in the dish.
4. Grate all the cheese and sprinkle roughly 1/3 of the strong cheese straight onto the bottom of the baking dish. Pour 1/5 of the cream onto the cheese and sprinkle the rosemary (chopped finely) over the cream. Season this with pepper. On top of this, add a layer of potatoes 1 slice thick, not overlapping. Now take roughly 1/5 of the garlic and sprinkle it on top of the potato layer.
5. Once this has been done, dice both onions and place together in a bowl and mix adequately. Sprinkle roughly a 1/5 of the onions on top of the potato and the garlic.
6. Repeat steps 4 and 5 until there is just enough potato to do one more layer. Remember to alternate the layers between strong cheese and mild cheese.
7. You should have more than enough cheese for one layer so sprinkle 1/3 of the remaining cheese on top of the previous layer of potatoes. Now take your thyme and half of your parsley and chop finely. Sprinkle the chopped herbs onto the cheese and season with pepper. Place the remaining potatoes on top and press down lightly. You should see cream rising through the layers and coming up to the top. Now sprinkle the remaining cheese, garlic and onions on top and then pour the remaining cream onto. Season with pepper and a little salt.
8. Place dish in cold oven and turn heat to 210 degrees. This will ensure the heat spreads through the dish gradually. Cook until the cream is bubbling and the cheese is crisp and golden on top. Once removed, and whilst still hot, garnish the dish with the remaining herbs.