This gorgeous dish is classic French Savoyard cuisine. I was shown it whilst working in the French Alps; we used to serve it to the guests in our chalet on their first night on the mountain, to nourish them for the snow-packed days ahead. It is easy to prepare and tastes divine. Traditionally, reblochon cheese would be used, but the substitute raclette (from the deli cheese counter) does a good job! It is perfect for winter evenings, as it is so heavy, rich and hot! To combat that, it is served with charcuterie (cold meats, pickles, onions) lovely breads and a fresh salad
600g cheaper cuts of bacon (e.g bacon pieces/ends) *
2 large white onions
2.5kg medium-sized red potatoes, such as Desirée
375ml (half a bottle) white wine
500ml single cream
freshly ground black pepper
300g raclette cheese
* For a vegetarian version of this dish, substitute the bacon for cherry tomatoes, cut into halves. Allow the wine to reduce on its own before adding the tomatoes to the mixture for the last 2-3 minutes – follow the remaining steps in the recipe as normal
This consists of pieces of cured meats and salami, accompanied with pickled onions and gherkins. We also served thick slices of baguette and a fresh green salad with this meal
1. Chop the bacon pieces into small 1cm cubes, so they resemble lardons and finely slice the onions. Add these to a frying pan, and sauté over a low heat.
2. After 10 minutes add half the wine and after a further 10 minutes the remaining half. Reduce the wine significantly, so it becomes cloudy and syrupy in consistency – this will probably take an additional 20-30 minutes.
3. Meanwhile slice the potatoes finely, (you can keep the skins on if you wish) and boil for 2-5 minutes, just to get them slightly tender. Strain them and return to the pot, cover with a lid to keep them warm.
4. Preheat oven to 170ºC on Bake
5. Once the bacon/onion mixture has cooked down and the wine is at the right consistency, transfer to a large, deep, oven-proof dish and spread out evenly. On top of this carefully layer the potatoes.
6. Now, add the cream to the dish – you may find you don’t need the full amount. Ideally, the cream should top up the wine mixture so it is between a third and half-way up the dish.
7. Slice the raclette into thick chunks and lay on top of the potatoes. Bake in a preheated oven for 50-70 minutes.
The tartliflette is now ready to eat, or, if you have made it in advance, allow to cool, cover the top with glad wrap and refrigerate until required. To reheat, place the tartiflette back into the oven for 20-25 minutes.
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