Potato dishes

New Potatoes Baked in an Orange Scented Salt Crust with Mint and Rosemary

Baked new Potatoes in an orange scented salt dough crust with mint and rosemary.

Baked new Potatoes in an orange scented salt dough crust with mint and rosemary.

At the End of April 2016 I attended the first Scottish Symposium of Food in Edinburgh, ‘Scotland’s Foodscape’.  I had two brilliant and vibrant days discussing food, farming, the ecology of land and sea as well as the more thorny political issues that surround food and its production at both a local and global level. I met like-minded and passionate people and came away energised and inspired. The plea of the Symposium leaders was that we use our energy and knowledge to go out there and do… in whatever way that means for us. My way is to cook; to be inspired by the food, the produce and the producers that I hap across and work with, and to pass the skills and recipes on in a ‘doable’ format for you.

The inspiration for these scrumptious potatoes came from the Symposium dinner. We were treated to a feast of all things Scottish cooked by the fabulous catering company Appetite Direct, http://www.appetitedirect.com/.  On the menu was a tender casserole of local hogget, wild garlic dumplings and the tastiest potatoes that I have every encountered. Salted to perfection, the texture soft yet waxy and the flavour encapsulating everything that a potato should be. Importantly, these qualities all combined to ensure that these potatoes were best eaten with no further adornment. No butter, no olive oil, no ‘any other’ sauce needed. These potatoes had been baked in a salt crust with mint and rosemary. Continue reading

Pomme de Terres Solognotes

MediteraneanRecipes& serve with…. potato and vegetable accompaniments

I found this beautiful dish in a delightful book Cuisine Du Terroir; the Lost Domaine of French Cooking; Blenheim House Books.  This is my adaptation of a light and fragrant potato gratin which can be served as a simple meal  or to accompany a roast or casserole.


Herb infusing milk for Pommes du Terres Solgonotes

Serves 4

300ml milk

300ml double cream

25g fresh herbs such as basil, tarragon, flat leaved parsley

1-2 sprigs of fresh thyme

5 black peppercorns

650 g potatoes

1 clove garlic

30g soft butter


50 g grated gruyere cheese

Put the milk into a pan along with the herbs and peppercorns. Over a moderate heat bring the milk to the boil and simmer for ten minutes, being careful not to burn the milk on the base of the pan. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the herbs to infuse while you prepare the potatoes.

Peel and thinly slice the potatoes and put them into a heat proof mixing bowl.  Bring the infusing milk back to the boil and then strain  the milk over the potatoes and discard the herbs.

Cut the garlic clove in half and rub the cut side thoroughly over the base and insides of  a 1 1/2  litre gratin dish and then butter the dish generously.

Heat the oven to 180c/gas 5

Drain the potatoes  and reserve about 100ml of the infused milk.  Mix the reserved milk with the double cream. Arrange the sliced potatoes, overlapping them in the dish in layers.  Season each layer with a little salt and some of the infused milk and cream. When all of the potato is layered pour over the remaining milk and cream.

Cover the gratin with a  butter paper or a piece of buttered baking parchment.  Put the gratin dish onto a baking tray and bake for 30 minutes. After this time the potatoes should be cooked and the cream thickened and bubbling. Remove the paper, sprinkle the grated cheese over the top of the gratin and return to the oven for ten to fifteen minutes to brown.

Serve as a simple meal with a light salad or as an accompaniment to a Roast or Casserole.