Boulangère Potatoes Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 kg (3.3 lbs) floury potatoes: Choose a variety like Desiree, Russet, or Maris Piper.
  • 2 medium onions: White or yellow onions work well.
  • Fresh herbs: A few sprigs of thyme or rosemary. Sage is also a delicious option.
  • 50g (about 3.5 tablespoons) unsalted butter: Cut into small cubes.
  • 400ml vegetable or chicken stock: Hot.
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Optional: For a richer finish, grate some Parmesan or Gruyere cheese over the top.

Equipment

  • Large ovenproof baking dish (about 20cm x 30cm)
  • Sharp knife
  • Mandoline slicer (optional, for even potato slices)

Instructions:

Prep work:

  • Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas mark 4.
  • Peel and thinly slice the potatoes. A mandoline slicer helps to get even thickness (about 2mm thick).
  • Peel and thinly slice the onions.
  • Finely chop your herbs, reserving a few sprigs/leaves for the top.

Assemble the potatoes:

  • Grease the baking dish generously with butter.
  • Start with a layer of sliced onions.
  • Add a single layer of potatoes, overlapping them slightly.
  • Season with salt, pepper, and a sprinkle of herbs.
  • Dot with a few pieces of butter.
  • Repeat the layering process: onions, potatoes, seasoning, butter.
  • Finish with a final layer of neatly overlapping potatoes.

Add the liquid:

  • Carefully pour the hot stock over the layered potatoes. The stock should almost cover the top layer; leave the very top slightly exposed for crispiness.
  • Season the top with salt, pepper, and any remaining herbs.
  • Dot the top with the remaining butter.

Bake:

  • Cover the dish tightly with aluminum foil.
  • Bake for 1 hour.
  • Remove the foil and bake for another 30-40 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender (test with a fork) and the top is beautifully golden brown.

Optional: Finishing touch:

  • For a touch of cheesy goodness, sprinkle grated Parmesan or Gruyere over the potatoes during the last 10 minutes of baking.

Tips:

  • If you don’t have a mandoline, aim for thin, consistent potato slices with a sharp knife.
  • Don’t overfill the baking dish. You want to allow space for the potatoes to cook and release their starch, creating a lovely sauce.
  • Use hot stock; this helps to start the cooking process immediately.
  • Adjust the seasonings to your liking!
  • Experiment with other herbs like oregano or a hint of garlic.

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