Recipe by Neil Roake
“I took the plunge recently to celebrate a significant birthday milestone and went skiing in Avoriaz, France. The self-catering units were ideal to test out some classic alpine dishes (most of which involve cheese!). I tracked down the Reblochon cheese, specific to the Alps, from a drool-worthy supermarket and proceeded to make this classic dish of potatoes, bacon and cheese called ‘tartiflette’. It works just as well with a large wheel of Camembert… and lots of red wine! (Apart from a sprained calf muscle from skiing into my instructor, I arrived home with all bones intact and a hankering to do it all again).”
- 1kg medium-sized Rosetta potatoes
- 1kg Nicola Mediterranean potatoes/2kg waxy potatoes
- 30ml (2 tbsp) olive oil
- 2 large onions, peeled and diced
- 250g smoked bacon, diced
- 1 garlic clove, peeled
- salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 250g Camembert/Reblochon (if you can source it)
- dressed green salad, to serve
- chopped chives, to garnish
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Place the potatoes, unpeeled, in a large pot, cover with water and bring to a boil, 25 minutes.
Heat the olive oil in a heavy-base pan over medium heat, add the onions and bacon and cook gently, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft but not brown, 10 minutes.
Drain the potatoes and let them cool before roughly slicing into 3cm cubes.
Cut the garlic clove in half and rub the inside of an ovenproof dish or baking tin with it. Place half of the potato cubes over the base of the dish, season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with half of the bacon and onion. Add the remaining potatoes in a layer, then top with the remaining bacon and onion mixture. Slice the Camembert or Reblochon in half horizontally and place the halves on the top of the dish. Put the lid on or cover with foil and bake in the oven until the potatoes are starting to crisp around the edges and the cheese has melted, 30 – 40 minutes.
Remove the lid or foil and cook until the potatoes are crispy around the edges, about 10 minutes. Garnish with fresh chives and serve with a dressed leafy salad.