Sticky chorizo potatoes

Winter starches, yeah? But something a bit quicker than a stew? Cursory tapas influence? Yep, sweet – hop on.

Chorizo potatoes

Ok, it’s a terrible picture – I’m still finding my feet with flash and working without daylight. But I’ll assure you, it tastes way better than it looks, and you can bring it in at just under twenty minutes. That’s not bad given how much faffing I usually mandate.

It’s potatoes and chorizo and garlic and stock, and it does what it says on the tin.

It might not make the cut for the book, but I’ll definitely be making it again.

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Potato and spinach tart with mature cheddar (tarte aux pommes de terre)

A pun is not the best place to start when constructing a recipe. But once I’d had the idea for “tarte aux pommes(de terre)” I couldn’t get it out of my head until I’d made it. The first iteration looked the part – all prettily layered – but didn’t really work as a dish. There was something there, though, and the presentation was too good to let slide; so I did it again, and hit on something that works rather well.

Potato and spinach tart with mature cheddar

Version one was a basic spinach tart with a potato hat on. There was dill in the mix, aping a spanakopita. But without the feta (I was cooking for my boyfriend, and he’s  lactose intolerant) it just doesn’t cohere. Cheese, though, cheese – that’s the key.

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Stuffed potato skins

…or “twice baked potatoes”, or “fully loaded skins” if that floats your boat.

Over lunch on Saturday, Kit – somewhat left-field – suggested potato skins for dinner. They’re a greasy, joyous bar grub classic, and I agreed in a second.

Stuffed potato skins - done

They also go by more names than Gandalf. Well, ok, they go by a shade under half as many names as Gandalf if we’re being pernickety, but that’s not the point. The point is that dishes with multiple vernacular names are a searchability (and SEO) headache, but I’m fairly sure that whether we’re calling them stuffed skins, loaded skins, or twice baked potatoes, they’re all the same filthy/gorgeous greasy carb pile.

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Potato, leek and chorizo pie

The Delicious Magazine website has a neat looking recipe for a Limoges style potato pie. The basis of it is simple enough – a flat, crimped, two sheet pastry affair of layered potatoes with herbs and shallots. But what got my attention was the liquid filling. A kind of savoury herb custard is poured into the pie midway through cooking. Egg yolks, beaten into warmed cream, go in through a hole in the top crust.

I assume this sets partially through the cooking time but remains a little most, adding a light gravy to a pie that could otherwise be a little dry. A quick Google hasn’t yielded much insight into this particular technique, but the pie sounded splendid, and I thought I’d give it a go.

Slice of potato leek and chorizo pie

Of course, I couldn’t help but tinker. My partner suggested “something with potatoes and leeks” for dinner, I’m mildly obsessed with chorizo, and I straight-up forgot the liquid filling was meant to go in part way through. So this is not the Delicious Magazine Limoges-style potato pie. It’s a kind of confused spicy homage.

I’ll re-do the Limoges pie properly in the week.

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Chicory and manchego potato bake

Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall has, in Veg Every day, something he calls a “vegiflette toastie”. It’s veg-filled cheese on toast, loosely inspired by tartiflette. Funnily enough, a heap of stuff, fried and baked with cheese and potatoes, loosely inspired by tartiflette is one of my own staples.

Chicory & manchego potato bake

I like to fry potatoes and onions, plus something else that’s lying around (often bacon), then sprinkle over flour, let out with milk, and melt in a fuckload of taleggio. Once it’s amalgamated, you bake it for a bit to finish. It’s tasty, and non-trivially indulgent.

Chicory & manchego potato bakeHugh suggests chicory in his version, which isn’t something I cook with much, so I tried it. The chicory was added towards the end, to just soften a little and cover in sauce. In with the potatoes and onions I fried leftover cauliflower and loads of thyme and garlic. The cheese happened to be manchego.

 

It works as well as any other variant on the cheesy potato bake theme. The chicory gives off quite a bit of water as it wilts, so this one was a little sloppy. It also has a bitter, astringent tang that works well with the rich sauce, but some may find off-putting.

 

Roasted cauliflower and potato warm salad

Another recipe riffing on Jerusalem, I’m afraid. Near the beginning of the book, there’s a roasted cauliflower salad with handfuls of herbs and hazelnuts. It looks great, but I’m no huge fan of hazelnuts, and wanted something rather more substantial. So I dicked about with it:

Roasted cauliflower and potato salad

This eats well enough either partly cooled after roasting or chilled later, and if you want to give it a kick, you can toss some harissa through it. It would also take chorizo if you felt meat was required.

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