Tartiwhat? Tartiflette I say…. I first had this dish in a small motel while training a school recently. The motel to be honest is not the most up market affair but that is easily made up for the by lady who pretty much runs everything. She always seems absolutely upbeat and is happy to kindly rib her guests- she just seems to be a glass half full person. One night I got in a little late and asked what the special was. Tartiflette I was informed and after a brief description was none the wiser. However on arrival it proved to be superb comfort food. A little research seems to indicate this simple dish is not as well known as many other French dishes but seems to be gaining popularity. It’s simple to make and here is my take….
Potatoes – any that don’t fall apart on boiling and are a good size.
Reblochon Cheese – make the effort to find it!
Onion- one good size
400g Bacon (mmmmmmmmm bacon!)
Salt and pepper
Peel about 750 grams of potatoes and slice-not too thin and not too thick (how’s that for specific? OK try 1/4inch). Please no comments on mixing units! Put on the boil in salted water for 10 to 15 minutes. Basically cook them quite well through but not so they fall apart and have a bit of firmness. At the same time dice a good sized onion and sweat in some butter and a dash of olive oil. Do not brown the onions. Add 200g to 400g of bacon lardons and fry off gently with the onions with a glove of chopped garlic. As ever avoid pinching all the bacon here. 400g is for those who love bacon and have a weak will. Take a shallowish non metallic baking dish and butter it. Layer potatoes on the base and place some of the onion and bacon mix on top. Take half a reblochon cheese and dice it up roughly- rind and all. Put some of the cheese on top to the potatoes, onions and bacon. Season lightly. Repeat the layers. Drizzle some cream over the dish – a small tub should do as it does not want to be too “liquidy“. Pop in a preheated oven for 20mins or so at 200 degC. Top should crisp up nicely as should the top potatoes if you got the liquid right.
Enjoy! Simple and superb….