Saturday, April 3, 2010

Ad Hoc at Home Potato Pave Part 1

If I knew how to put a french accent on this keyboard, you would know this dish is prounounced Pa-VAY. Pave is French for paving stones so I suppose either pronunciation would work. Anyway.. on with the show:

Russet Potatoes
Prepare your baking dish:

That's parchment paper with a 5" overhang on each of the long sides of the dish. It's been sprayed with non-stick spray. This is looking like scalloped potatoes isn't it? Well, it is, sort of. There will be a surprise ending!
Pour 1 c heavy cream into a medium sized bowl. Slice your potatoes lengthwise on a mandoline set at 1/16th inch. If you are able, place the mandoline over the bowl, if you can't, then gather up the potatoes as quickly as possible and swirl them around in the cream. This keeps them from oxidizing.

Trim the potatoes to form a solid even layer on the bottom of the pan. It was late and I wasn't in much of a trimming mood so you will see my results weren't as precise as they might have been.

Repeat the process and after the second layer add dots of butter and salt and pepper.

Continue this process and after every second layer dot with butter and sprinkle salt and pepper. When the pan is filled wrap the parchment paper to form a package.

Cover the dish tightly with aluminum foil and bake at 350 for 1 hour and 50 min or until the potatoes are tender when poked with a sharp knife. Now comes the fun and exciting part! Take them out and place a weight on the top to press the potatoes down. The book recommends cutting a piece of cardboard to size, covering it with aluminum foil, placing that on top and then using cans to weight it down. Let them cool to room temperature. With all that engineering to be done, I left it in WSH's capable hands. I went to bed. I believe his solution was using and identically sized, shaped baking dish (I used to have a ceramics fetish, it's under control now) which he placed over the potatoes and used a grill press to weight. After cooling to room temperature you put it in the fridge for at least 6 hours- up to 2 days. Then you turn out the lights and follow your blogged out wife to bed.

You'll see the final stage of this dish on Sunday's post. I am excited about this dish, the outcome (if I get it right) is really very pretty and should complement our main dish very well.

See you soon!

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