I realize that I'm prone to exaggeration, but Frank's potatoes -- which we had at Thanksgiving -- are the best I've ever tasted.
Potato Bake, with Fennel and Artichoke
6 pounds of russet potatoes, peeled and sliced 2 large sweet onions
2 bulbs of fennel
2 12oz bags of frozen artichoke hearts (Trader Joes)
16 oz grated Gruyere
16 oz fresh whipping cream
6 oz Kerrygold butter
2 desert spoons of crushed garlic
1/2 cup of Pernod
Chop the fennel and onion into thin slices. Bring a large frying pan to extreme heat, and coat the bottom with butter and a high-heat vegetable oil. Dump the onion/fennel mix in and caramelize. And set aside
Defrost artichokes in microwave. Drain liquid, and allow to dry and cool. Slice the hearts length ways. Heat a pan (like before) this time with butter only, a shake of celery salt, and a mist of paprika. Brown the artichokes, and set aside.
In a big deep saucepan, heat remaining butter (4 oz) and add the garlic to seal it. Add the 16oz of fresh cream, and heat. Add the caramelized onion/fennel mix, and stir to blend all together (throw in a good desert spoon of horseradish too). Add the sliced potatoes, and stir regularly to a boil. Allow to simmer for 10 minutes. Season to taste. Add Pernod last.
Grease a Pyrex dish (13 X 9 X 2.5 inches) and fill it two thirds the way up with the creamed potato mix. Take one third of the grated cheese and layer evenly on top. Then, layer all of the browned artichokes over the cheese. Then layer another third of the grated cheese over the artichokes. Then, top off the dish with the remaining potato mix, and finish on top with the remaining cheese.
Bake at 375 for about 90 minutes. Hey presto!