potato & herb bake

When the Potato Movement spread to our town, I was thrilled to pick up 10 kgs (22 lbs) of small potatoes for €3.00.  (I love small potatoes – and they are cheaper than regular potatoes in Greece, probably because they are less popular.  The most common way to prepare potatoes in Greece is to peel them and then fry them, which is hard to do with small or new potatoes.  I never peel or fry them, so they are perfect for me!)  As it turns out, 10 kilos is a lot of kilos.  I came up with this recipe in an attempt to get rid of some of the potatoes, and we loved it.  And it’s as simple as can be.

I used a combination of dried and fresh herbs.  It’s still early in the season and the herbs on my balcony are pretty small, and I didn’t want to over-pick them.  You can use all dried, all fresh, or a combination like I did.  The fresh herbs I used are rosemary, oregano, thyme, and lemon thyme.

The dried herbs are oregano, rosemary, and thyme; there’s also flake salt.

Wash the potatoes.  Use a combination of white potatoes and orange sweetpotatoes.  I used one medium sweetpotato with a kilo of white potatoes, and that worked just fine; do try to include at least one sweetpotato.  It adds sweetness, and of course color and vitamins.

Put them in a pressure cooker and cover just barely with water.  Cook under pressure.  As soon as the pot reaches pressure, turn off the heat and let the pressure reduce naturally.  When the pot allows you to open it, drain the potatoes and rinse with cold water.  Slice them into rounds (because I used new potatoes, I sliced them on the long side; if you use regular potatoes, you can just slice them into regular rounds).

While the potatoes are cooking, slice the onions sideways.

Add two tablespoons of the garlic olive oil to the potatoes, and mix with a wooden spoon.  Add in all the dried herbs and salt, and half the fresh herbs.  If you are using all dried herbs, use all of them.  If you’re using all fresh herbs, add in about 3/4 of them.  Add in about half of the sliced onions as well.  Mix everything well and put into an ovensafe dish.

Sprinkle the remaining onions over the top, and drizzle another two tablespoons of garlic olive oil over the dish.  Bake and…

When the onions on top have started to blacken a bit, stir everything up and top with the crumbled cheese.  Bake again and…

Serve with another tablespoon of olive oil per plate.

Potato & herb bake
makes 4 servings (8 if a side dish)

1,000g mix of white potatoes and sweetpotatoes
150g onions, sliced sideways
1/2 cup garlic olive oil, divided
2 tsp dried oregano + 1 tsp fresh oregano or 3 tsp dried oregano or 3 tsp fresh oregano
1 tsp dried thyme + 2 tsp fresh thyme or 2 tsp dried thyme or 4 tsp fresh thyme
1 tsp dried rosemary + 2 tsp fresh or 2 tsp dried rosemary or 1 tbsp fresh rosemary
2 tsp fresh lemon thyme
1 tsp flake salt
200g anthotyro or other white Greek cheese (like feta or manouri), or dry ricotta

1.  Parboil potatoes and sweetpotatoes, barely covered in water, in a pressure cooker:  allow to come to pressure, then shut off heat and allow to release pressure naturally.  Drain and slice into rounds.

2.  Preheat oven to 200 C / 400 F.  In a large bowl, combine sliced potatoes with 2 tbsp oil, all dried herbs, and half fresh herbs (3/4 fresh herbs if using all fresh herbs), salt, and half the onions.  Stir together.  Place in an ovensafe dish.

3.  Sprinkle the remaining onions on top.  Drizzle 2 tbsp oil over the dish.  Bake, uncovered, for 20 minutes.

4.  Stir everything together.  Top with the cheese, crumbled.  Bake, uncovered, another 10 minutes.

5.  Serve; top with another 1 tbsp oil per plate if desired.

Nutritional Information
per serving, i.e., 1/4 of total recipe

534 calories
33g fat (7g saturated, 26g unsaturated)
51g carbohydrate
10g protein
8g dietary fiber
21mg cholesterol (7% DV)
364mg sodium (15% DV)
1,036mg potassium (30% DV)
Contains a significant amount (+10% DV)  of the following:
vitamin A (258%), calcium, thiamin, niacin, vitamin B-6, phosphorus, selenium, magnesium, zinc, vitamin C, iron, riboflavin, food folate, manganese, and copper.

You might also like:
Smashed Horseradish Potatoes with Caramelized Onions
Olive bread
Greek lentil soup 

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