12 March 2014

Tartiflette-Fancy name, easy delicious dish

As a "cheesemonger", I have a deep desire to make all famous cheese dishes. The cheese just begs me to create menus that make them even more fabulous! Tartiflette is just that dish. Traditionally made with Reblochon cheese from the Savoie region of France with onion, potatoes and lardons, tartiflette is basically a gratin dish with flair. Since lardons are nearly impossible to find in America and Reblochon cheese can often be bland, unripe, pasteurized versions of their French counterparts, I changed up my recipe to fit available ingredients with the best flavors. Not as traditional but absolutely fabulous and the best taste is really what I'm after!

I've given a few choices for cheese and used each of them to make Tartiflette. When shopping at your cheese shop, choose the ripest one for this dish. You'll want to pinch the cheese slightly and it should feel like pinching the fat place in your hand between thumb and first finger. A tiny bit firm in the middle surrounded by a nice squishy-ness....there, isn't that technical?

I also used fresh bacon that was not smoked. I found it at the local meat market and it is a great substitute for lardons.

TARTIFLETTE a la Boulevard Market

2 lbs. potatoes (I used Yukon Gold)
8 ounces lardons or bacon or unsmoked bacon, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
2 shallots, cleaned and thinly sliced
2 Tablespoons butter
1 clove garlic
3 ounces dry white wine
7 ounces heavy cream
1 pound Reblochon, Tallegio or Pont l'eveque cheese
salt & pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
In a saucepan, cover potatoes with water and boil for 15 minutes. Drain and remove skins, slice potatoes into 1/4 inch thick slices.
In a saute pan over medium heat, melt butter and cook shallots until soft but not browned. Remove from pan and set aside. In same pan, fry bacon and garlic until just browned. Add onions back in and de-glaze pan with wine for a couple minutes. Season with salt & pepper and add heavy cream. Remove from heat.
Remove rind from cheese and cut into slices about 1/3 inch thick.
In a casserole dish, layer potatoes and bacon mixture and cheese in 2 layers topping with cheese. Bake 10-15 minutes until cheese is bubbling and golden brown.

Amazing and needs very little served with it besides a simple salad dressed with vinaigrette!

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