Thursday, March 21, 2013

Easy Peasy Potato Gratin

Pin this already if you have a husband who prefers you cooking even if it's burnt instant noodles. Also if there's a baby in the picture and ALL you have is 20 minutes to prepare a meal. This, my friend, is a super duper easy comfort food that zero cooking skill is required. I happened to feel a bit creative last night - you need to be when there's no real meat in the freezer.Oh but we do have a 5.5ft high larder that's filled to the brim with dry ingredients, to the point of it refusing 2 tubes of Pringles joining the party.

Long story short, make this already. I think I'm committing a sin if I don't share it with you.

Potato Gratin a la Nadia (heheh)
5 medium, waxy potatoes (the cheap kind would do)
Dried thyme
Ground black pepper
Extra virgin olive oil
5 beef sausages (again, nothing fancy here I only used ones from Ramly Burger)
Mozzarella cheese (think "extra cheese")
Dried oregano

0. Preheat oven to 200C. Turn your dial to top and bottom grill.
1. Peel potatoes. Then slice them thinly, approx 2mm-ish each.
2. Place potatoes in an oven-proof glass dish. I think mine was about 7" sq.
3. Season with salt, pepper, and thyme. I don't do measurements here because's a throw-whatever-you-have-into-the-pan kinda dish. One trick that my mom taught me was to wash hands and dab a spot of the thing you're seasoning with a finger, then taste it. Alas as the pros always remind us "go easy on the salt cos you can always add more".
4. Toss some olive oil in.
5. Slice sausages and arrange them on top of the potatoes.
6. Cover dish with foil wrap and place it in the oven. This will ensure that the tatters will cook perfectly - it will steam in its own juice.
5. Bake for 1 hour. Try checking after 45mins. If the potato's soft and doesnt taste errr...raw, it's done. I was busy with the baby hence the 1 hour cooking time.

6. Take the dish out of the oven. Grate a very unhealthy amount of mozzarella on top (mwahahahaaa).
7. Sprinkle about half a teaspoon of oregano.
8. Place the dish, uncovered, back into the oven. What we wanna do is broil the cheese to an awesome melt-crispy combo. Aaaaaaahhh.....
9. Depending on how you prefer your cheese to be, it should be ready in 15 minutes.

Onion Mushroom Gravy
2tbs melted butter
Half an onion, sliced thinly
A handful of sliced button mushroom
1tbs flour
1 beef bouillon, diluted in 1 cup of water (or 1 cup of beef stock)

1. Sautee onion in melted butter till fragrant.
2. Throw in mushroom.
3. When the onion is soft and mushy, add flour. Give it a quick stir till you hear the crackling sound.
4. Add beef stock and make a reduction. You should get a smooth gravy consistency in a few minutes.

Apple and Lettuce Salad
1 cup thinly sliced lettuce
1 apple, cored and diced to small bits
Juice of half a lemon
Dash of honey
Salt to season

Well, this is a no-brainer. Toss everything together in a bowl/container and leave it in the fridge till serving time. It's oh, so, GOOD when paired with the steaming hot gratin.

Come eating time, everything goes into the plate to be enjoyed by your goodself and your loved ones. Ngeeeeee :D

Seriously, it took me longer to type the recipe out than to cook this meal. 30 minutes tops if you're shoooooo shlooooow in the kitchen. I mean, who doesn't have the skills to slice potatoes? Even faster if you have a mandoline.

Oh, this recipe is good 4, or 3 very hungry people.

You're welcome.

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