- Prep time 20 minutes
- Cook time 40 minutes
- Serves 4
Ready to really revamp your vegetable gratin game? This one is guaranteed to stand out from the plain potato gratin that we’re all too familiar with. Spicy, tangy, and impossibly juicy napa cabbage kimchi canoodles in a pool of savory, garlicky, cream sauce (and the whole thing is topped with bubbling stringy cheeses). The natural tanginess of the kimchi and the addition of yogurt in the sauce cuts through the gratin’s richness, with bursts of heat from chunks of pickled chiles. Cooling undertones from shiso leaves and nutty sesame oil bring an exciting yet well-balanced depth of flavor.
—Mandy @ Lady and pups
Test Kitchen Notes
This dish is part of Residentsgiving—aka the Thanksgiving menu of our wildest dreams—created by Food52's resident experts-slash-superheroes. Devour the rest of the spread here, and while you're at it, learn how to Remix & Remaster your Thanksgiving. —The Editors
4 1/3 cups
(850 grams) loosely packed, lightly drained kimchi
oil-packed anchovies, plus 1 tablespoon of their oil
1 1/4 teaspoons
freshly ground black pepper
(227 grams) heavy cream
(180 grams) plain whole-milk yogurt
garlic cloves, grated
freshly grated nutmeg, plus more for serving
(320 grams) Mexican-style shredded cheese blend, divided
(48 grams) chopped pickled jalapeños
1 to 2 teaspoons
gochugaru, depending on your heat preference
fresh shiso leaves, or 3 scallions, or a handful of fennel fronds, thinly sliced (optional)
toasted sesame oil
- Heat the oven to 425°F (200°C fan) and position a rack in the middle-upper area. If using whole kimchi, remove the stem and cut into 1-inch-long segments. Place the kimchi in a large bowl. If the kimchi tastes very sweet and not sour enough (typical with store-bought kimchi), you can add additional tang by mixing in 1 tablespoon of distilled white vinegar.
- In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the anchovies and their oil and black pepper. Cook, pressing on the anchovies until broken down and slightly browned. Turn off the heat and mix in the heavy cream, yogurt, garlic, nutmeg, and 2½ cups of the cheese.
- Mix about three-quarters (about a heaping 2 cups) of the anchovy mixture into the kimchi until well combined, then transfer into a 2½- to 3-quart ramekin or baking dish. Add the remaining ½ cup of cheese and the chopped jalapeño to the remaining anchovy mixture in the medium saucepan until combined, then set aside. Bake the gratin for about 35 minutes, until bubbling.
- Switch the oven to broil on high. Remove the baking dish from the oven, then dollop the reserved cheese mixture over the top, sprinkle with the gochugaru, and grate a bit more nutmeg over the top. Scatter over the shiso leaves or scallions or fennel fronds (if using). Broil for 5 minutes, and once the cheese on top has melted, drizzle the toasted sesame oil over the surface and return to the broiler for 1 to 2 more minutes, until browned. Serve immediately.