Tuscan Kale Gratin For Two

January 16, 2014

Author Notes: You can't go wrong serving a vegetable gratin this time of year. My only complaint is that most recipes serve up to a dozen folks, and we are a family of two. So I adapted my gratin recipe to make about four servings, enough for leftovers. Healing from a hip injury, I streamlined the cooking method by buying pre-washed packaged kale and -- gasp -- cooking it in the microwave.Lizthechef

Food52 Review: The crunchy topping against the cheesy-coated kale makes this is an ideal side dish on a chilly evening -- or any evening, for that matter. Be bold with your pinches of nutmeg and cayenne if you prefer a bit more oomph, and enjoy this classic comfort food with a new twist.figgypudding

Serves: 2, generously


  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose unbleached white flour
  • 1 pinch freshly ground nutmeg, or more to taste
  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper, or more to taste
  • 3/4 cup Gruyère cheese, coarsely grated
  • 10 ounces washed and chopped Tuscan kale
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, finely grated
  • A pinch of sweet Hungarian paprika
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, chopped
In This Recipe


  1. Heat the oven to 375° F.
  2. Heat the milk, using a glass measuring cup, for 1 minute on high in the microwave.
  3. Melt the butter in a large skillet. Add the chopped onion and cook over medium heat until the onion is translucent but not browned, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add the flour, stirring until combined, and then whisk in the hot milk. Whisk sauce until it thickens and will coat the back of a wooden spoon. Add the nutmeg and cayenne. Stir, turn off the heat, and then stir in the Gruyère until melted and combined.
  4. Add the kale, salt, and pepper to the béchamel. Turn the heat back on and cook until the kale begins to just wilt, about 3 minutes.
  5. Turn everything into an 8-inch glass baking dish or similarly sized gratin dish. Combine the panko and Parmesan, then sprinkle over the gratin. Dust with a pinch of paprika and dot with butter.
  6. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until hot and bubbling.

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Reviews (4) Questions (0)

4 Reviews

Author Comment
Lizthechef January 16, 2015
Glad you liked it. I had forgotten about this recipe and have kale growing in our winter garden - should be ready now.
Tom M. January 16, 2015
Tried this for the first time. I'm an admitted hack in the kitchen but this actually came out good enough that my daughter said she like it. My wife and I loved it, I think the next time I will add more kale. Great recipe.
Anath W. October 26, 2014
I adore your recipes and, despite not being much of a cook and also vegetarian, I've tried quite of few of those which are meatless. Terrific and usually not too difficult for someone who is all thumbs. One wish, however: nutritional info on each of them? Thank you!
Author Comment
Lizthechef October 26, 2014
I wish I knew how to get that app - at least for my blog. Promise, I will work on this!