Rich and comforting, tartiflette, a sort of rustic gratin of potatoes, onions, bacon, and plenty of dairy (crème fraîche, a generous layer of Reblochon cheese, and a final pour of cream), is not for anyone with a small appetite or an inclination toward moderation. You can prepare the potato mixture up to a few days in advance and then simply dress it with the dairy and send it into the oven just before you sit down to dinner.
A NOTE ON WINE
A wine from the very alpine Savoy region of France works really well with this hearty dish-I especially like to serve it with either a red wine made from mondeuse grapes, which have a real barnyard quality, or a white wine made with jacquère grapes.
Cooking MethodBaking, Sauteeing
OccasionCasual Dinner Party, Formal Dinner Party
Recipe CourseMain Course, Side Dish
Dietary ConsiderationEgg-free, Peanut Free, Soy Free
Type of DishGratin
- ¼ pound sliced bacon, cut crosswise into ½-inch lardons
- 1 yellow onion, peeled and diced
- 8 leaves fresh sage, roughly chopped
- 1 ½ pounds small, waxy yellow potatoes, peeled and cut into bite-size pieces
- ½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- ½ cup crème fraîche
- Coarse salt
- 1/3 pound Reblochon cheese or any soft, washed-rind cheese such as Brie)
- 2 tablespoons heavy cream
Preheat the oven to 425°F.
Place the bacon into a large, heavy, ovenproof skillet over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until all of the fat has nearly rendered and the bacon is just beginning to crisp, 5 to 10 minutes.
Add the onion to the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, another 10 minutes.
Add the sage and potatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are quite brown and sticky, almost like a jam, and the potatoes are just cooked through, 20 to 25 minutes. Stir the nutmeg and crème fraîche into the potato mixture and season with salt.
At this point you can transfer the potato mixture to a gratin dish or individual ramekins or simply leave them in the skillet.
Blanket the potato mixture with slices of the cheese and evenly pour over the cream. Place the skillet in the oven and bake until the cheese has melted and browned, about 15 minutes.
2014 Jody Williams