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Turnip and Guanciale Gratin


2 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 ½ pounds medium turnips, peeled, and thinly sliced (use a sharp knife or mandoline)

1 tablespoon thyme, chopped

3 ounces guanciale (country ham or smoky bacon can be substituted), finely diced and slowly cooked until just shy of crispy

1 teaspoons kosher salt

⅛ teaspoon cayenne

1 cup heavy cream

1 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, finely grated


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Melt butter until lightly browned in a 12-inch cast iron skillet, and then remove from heat.
  3. Arrange about ⅓ of the sliced turnips in buttery skillet. Sprinkle with about ⅓ of the thyme, rendered guanciale, kosher salt, and cayenne. Repeat for 2 more layers (a total of three layers).
  4. Return skillet to the stove over medium heat. Cook gently until bottom layer of turnips is golden brown.
  5. Add cream, cover skillet with foil, and bake until the turnips are just tender (yield when poked with a paring knife).
  6. Remove foil and sprinkle evenly with parmesan. Bake, uncovered, until golden and bubbling, 10−15 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.
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