Sunday, August 21, 2005
Potato Galette or Gratin or Pie? Another Kitchen Toy and Wasabi Tilapia
I had some baby spinach that was starting to wilt, a sweet potato, some Yukon Gold potatoes and a Mandoline. Two of my favorite cookbooks came to mind - Jacques Pepin's Table and Bonnie Stern's Essentials of Home CookingJacques calls his a galette and uses potatoes and spinach. Bonnie Stern calls hers a gratin, but there's no cheese or milk. She uses Yukon Golds and sweet potatoes in hers. Since I love them both and can never leave well enough alone, I combined all three ingredients, called it a pie (no crust, but if Bonnie can make a gratin with no cheese or cream, then I can make a pie with no crust) and here it is.
Potato, Spinach & Sweet Potato Pie
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Baking Time: 1 hour
4 large Yukon Gold Potatoes (or whatever your favourite is)
1 sweet potato
150 g baby spinach, wilted, drained & coarsely chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
2 tbsp fresh rosemary, chopped
Sea salt & freshly ground pepper to taste
2 tbsp olive oil
2 sheets of parchment paper
1. Preheat your oven to 400 - 425 degrees F/220 degrees C
2. Line a round oven-proof dish that is 1 1/2 - 2" deep with a round of well oiled parchment paper and sprinkle with some rosemary, salt & pepper.
3. Slice potatos into 1/2" rounds and arrange in a circular fashion to cover the bottom of the dish. Arrange as prettily as you can as this will really be the top when you serve it. Make two layers, sprinkling with rosemary & pepper between each layer and drizzle a little olive oil.
4. Slice the sweet potato and repeat as for potatoes.
5. Make sure the spinach is well drained after you steam it for a few minutes to wilt it, toss with garlic, coarsely chop and cover the sweet potatoes evenly.
6. Add the last two layers of potatoes and season as above. Cover with another layer of oiled parchment and place something heavy on top. (I use a nest of clay souffle dishes).
7. Bake at 400-425F/200/220C for one hour.
8. Loosen the sides and invert the dish over a plate - don't forget to remove the layer of parchment first!
9. Remove the top parchment, sprinkle with more rosemary, slice in wedges and serve.
I like to use my Mandolinefor slicing the potatoes and sweet potatos. There are many varieties out there, some costing in the $100's others for as little as $10. Mine is an inexpensive one made by Star-Frits. I love it, but of all my kitchen toys, it is the one I treat with the most respect. It is sharper than any knive you could ever own. So please keep it out of reach of children and ALWAYS, I mean ALWAYS use the guard. Warning aside, it does the job of even slicing better, faster and more evenly than anything. My Cuisinart (food processor) is fine if I don't care about slices coming out perfect every time, but not for a presentation piece like this.
I also picked up some tilapia today so I thought I'd make a variation on a recipe that's in my cookbook. That one combines horseradish root with panko bread crumbs for a coating and it's delicious. So I thought I'd try something a little simpler and use some Gold's Wasabi Sauce that I have. It's really like mayonnaise, so if you can't find Gold's just add some grated fresh ginger root and some wasabi powder to your favorite mayo and you should be fine.
Sometimes more IS better - like with the potato pie, but sometimes one should just stick with a winner. Although it tasted fine, it looked terrible. You can't really tell from this picture, but the wasabi sauce leaks through the panko crumbs and gives a greenish hue is spots that makes it almost look moldy - well forget the ALMOST. I guess this would be fine for a romantic candlelit dinner (not too many candles though). I'm not sure you'd want to serve it in the light though. The taste was lovely, I must admit - a little kick but also some sweetness somehow.
I will share the recipe if anyone requests it.