Potato and Cheese Purée

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

French Regional Cooking

By Anne Willan

Published 1981

  • About

In contrast to cheese fondue, which is cooked only until the cheese melts, the cheese and potato mixture for aligot should be beaten over the heat so the cheese cooks to form long ribbons which are cut (‘aligoter’ in the local dialect) for serving. Dry gruyère or sharp cheddar cheese can be used instead of cantal.


1 kg potatoes 2 lb
60 g butter 2 oz
250 ml double cream or crème fraîche* 9 fl oz
360 g grated cantal cheese 12 oz


Peel the potatoes and cut each in 2 or 3 even chunks. Put them in a pot, cover with cold water and add a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil and simmer for 15‐20 minutes or until the potatoes are tender when pierced with a knife or skewer; they should be quite soft.

Drain the potatoes thoroughly and, while still hot, push them through a sieve or purée in a hand food mill. Put the purée in a heavy saucepan, add the butter and beat the potatoes with a wooden spoon over a low fire until light and fluffy. Without removing the mixture from the low fire beat in the cream, then the cheese and continue beating constantly with a wooden spoon until the aligot forms long ribbons when it falls from the spoon. Add pepper, taste for seasoning and serve very hot.