Thursday, November 12, 2009
Roasted Potato Stacks
I know, I know, sorry to have to give you all the creeps with the picture in the last entry. So get your mind off it by thinking of roasted potato stacks.
Here's the theory behind it: get a bunch of potatoes, waxy preferred, probably around medium to small, then slice them with a mandoline (sorry, if you're a serious cook you'll have one -- can't take responsibility for hand-sliced). Then soak them in cold water for a while, then dry them off, one by one, toss them in oil and herbs, stack them somewhat randomly into towers and then bake them. Here's how I did it:
(To serve two):
4-6 new potatoes, blond or purple, smallish (a bit larger than a very large hen's egg), scrubbed but not peeled
3-6 garlic cloves, peeled and slivered thinly
Truffle oil (optional)
1 tablespoon dried thyme or 2 chopped fresh thyme
Fresh ground pepper
Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Mandoline potatoes, thicker than the thickest potato chip you ever ate but thin enough to bend almost in half without breaking; about 1 1/12 of an inch.
Immerse slices in cold water pre-treated with about three tablespoons salt and three tablespoons sugar.
After about a half an hour, drain and rinse potatoes. Dry thoroughly on paper towels.
Toss with truffle/olive oil and herbs until coated.
In a baking pan (aluminum, glass, anything flat is okay) start stacking the potato slices. Intersperse each one with a couple of slivers of garlic. The more garlic, the better, as the slivers will help keep the potato slices apart so the hot oven air can circulate enough to bake (and not steam) them.
Once stacked, ideally about 1 1/2 to 2 inches high, carefully place in baking pan.
Reduce oven temperature to about 475 and put the potatoes in on the middle rack. Time it at 15-minute intervals so you can rotate the baking dish and make sure the stacks aren't collapsing.
After about 45 minutes, start checking every five minutes or so. The top few potato slices should be brown and almost crispy, as should be all the edges. Serve with chopped Italian parsley.