The Surprising Ingredient That Will Elevate Your Potato Gratin

Who doesn't love potato gratin? Made from thin slices of potatoes that are layered with garlic-steeped cream into a casserole dish before being topped with plenty of grated cheese and baked in a hot oven until browned and bubbly, this classic comfort food dish is thought to have originated in the dairy-rich region of the French Rhone-Alpes (via The Spruce Eats). The perfect accompaniment to simple roasted proteins such as chicken, potato gratin looks and tastes fancy but in actuality is fairly simple to make.

Potato gratin is a dish that is easily customizable, with leeks, mushrooms, fresh herbs, sausage, and apples among the ingredients that are commonly used to add flavor and texture to the potato casserole (via Luna Cafe). But if those variations are ones you've tried already and you're looking for fresh ideas, there's a surprising ingredient you can layer into your next gratin that will add lushness, sweetness, and depth of flavor to the warm, cheesy spuds we all know and love.

Try some dried prunes in your potato gratin

If you don't love prunes, there's a good chance you've never tasted French prunes, which are primarily grown in France's southwest region and are held in high regard for their rich sweetness and plush, chewy texture, shares The New York Times. Given that the French revere prunes and also likely created potato gratin (via The Spruce Eats), the surprising suggestion of a prune-laced gratin from MyRecipes actually makes a whole lot of sense.

As noted in the recipe, the dried plums, when layered in with the thinly sliced potatoes, mop up and melt into the warm cream, adding caramelized sweetness to the savory dish. Plus, the prunes' subtle fruitiness make the finished gratin the perfect side dish to meats that are often served with fruit, such as roast pork. Prunes and potatoes together? It's a pairing we're itching to get into the kitchen to try out.