Friday Night Potato Galette

Being on the road a good bit lately, I’ve unintentionally ignored the blog primarily because of a general lack of cooking at home. I am not yet in the habit of photographing the food I order when I eat at restaurants, but it is something I may consider in the future. I could definitely write several posts about the places I’ve eaten lately, including the Front Porch Restaurant and Pie Shop in Dunnellon, Florida. The fresh blueberry pie was nothing short of incredible.

Growing tired of continually eating out, I promised Jill that I would cook dinner at home last Saturday. With “The Big Game” as inspiration, I thought it would be good to create a more gourmet version of one of my favorite game day snacks — potato skins.  So, here is my recipe for what I call Friday Night Potato Galette. I made this recipe up as I went along, so I am approximating the measurements.

I started by peeling and shredding four small baking potatoes and pressing the shreds between a few layers of paper towel to squeeze out excess moisture. I then tossed the shreds with about a half cup of chopped flat leafed parsley and a half cup of finely sliced green onions. I mixed in about a teaspoon of salt and a quarter teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper.

Potatoes with Parsley and Chives
Potatoes with Parsley and Chives

After mixing the potatoes, parsley, chives, salt and pepper together, I heated about two tablespoons of olive oil in a 12 inch non-stick skillet on high until the oil was very hot but not smoking. I then quickly tossed in the potato mixture and pressed it into a large potato pancake in the skillet. I turned the temperature down to medium heat and let the potatoes cook for about three minutes.

Potatoes in Nonstick Pan
Potatoes in Nonstick Pan

After about three minutes, the edges of the potato galette began to pull away from the edge of the skillet slightly.  I then placed a large, round platter on top of the skillet and, in one quick motion, inverted the skillet and platter so that the potato galette ended up on the platter with the browned side up. I don’t have a photo to illustrate this because both of my hands were utilized during this maneuver. I slid the potato galette back into the skillet, browned size up, and cooked the potatoes over medium low heat for about 20 minutes, checking occasionally to make sure the bottom browned up as well.

Flipped Potato Galette
Flipped Potato Galette

While the potato galette cooked, I pulled together the toppings. I trimmed the florets off two crowns of broccoli, then peeled the stalks and thinly sliced them. Why waste perfectly tasty broccoli stalks? I quickly sautéed the broccoli in a little olive oil over medium high heat and seasoned it with a dash of salt and pepper.

Sautéed Broccoli
Sautéed Broccoli

When the bottom of the potato galette was sufficiently browned, I slid it back onto the platter.

Potato Galette
Potato Galette

I topped the potato galette with a layer of freshly shredded cheddar cheese and the sautéed broccoli.

Potato Galette with Broccoli and Cheddar
Top with Broccoli and Cheddar

I then added several handfuls of fresh arugula and more cheddar cheese.

Add arugula and more cheese
Add Arugula and More Cheese

After slicing the potato galette like a pie, I topped each portion with a big spoonful of sour cream. The combination of flavors satisfied my craving for the traditional game day snack, but the dish had a somewhat more sophisticated presentation and was substantial enough to serve as a meal. Now I can’t wait until Jill makes Shannon’s Bean Dip to eat while we watch the game tomorrow.

Finish With Sour Cream
Finish With Sour Cream

Tater Tot Casserole

Many of our favorite recipes come from our friends.  This recipe comes from Josh and Erika.  We’ve served this to family and friends and it has always been a great success.  Artie doesn’t like tots on their own, but he really likes this recipe.  Use whichever bag of frozen vegetables you like best (I look for a bag without carrots).  Sometimes I bulk up the veggies in this recipe by adding a cooked 10-ounce box of frozen spinach).  This can easily be a one-dish weeknight meal or served with a green salad for a more substantial dinner.

Tater Tot Casserole

olive oil

1 medium onion

1 pound ground turkey

16 ounce bag of frozen vegetables

10 ounce can of cheddar cheese soup

large bag of frozen tater tots

1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Dice the onion.  Saute the onion in a teaspoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat for a few minutes until the onion is soft and translucent.  Add the ground turkey and cook until the meat is no longer pink.  Drain the oil from the meat.  While the meat is cooking, cook the frozen vegetables according to the package directions.  Put the meat and onion mixture in the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking dish.  Top with cooked vegetables.  Pour the cheddar cheese soup on top of the vegetables.  Spread tater tots in an even layer on top of the cheese soup.  Sprinkle cheddar cheese on top of tater tots.  Bake at 350 degrees for 25 – 30 minutes or until the tater tots are cooked through.

Artie’s plate, complete with artistic ketchup swirl.

Pesto Potato and Green Bean Salad: Two Ways

About a week ago we went up to Georgia and Artie’s parents showered us with our second batch of summer produce, which I wrote about in this post.  The produce included a big bag of little red potatoes and a big bag of green beans.

Red Potatoes

Green Beans

I made a big batch of Pesto Potato and Green Bean Salad (the recipe is at the end of the post), which we served two ways this week.

The first meal we had included Pesto Potato Salad, baked beans, and a veggie burger.  The Pesto Potato and Green Bean Salad rounded out this very summery, holiday-picnic type meal in a unique and creative way without being too heavy like mayonnaise-based potato salads.  The veggie burger wasn’t half bad either – it was Amy’s brand (probably the best frozen veggie burger I’ve ever had) on a Pepperidge Farm whole wheat sandwich thin with mozzarella cheese, spinach, and Paul Newman’s Farmer’s Garden salsa.

Pesto Potato Salad 1

The second night, I transformed the Pesto Potato and Green Bean Salad into what I’m calling Potato Salad Nicoise.  Nicoise Salad is a French salad which includes tuna, green beans, hard boiled eggs, tomatoes, onion, capers, and potatoes.  Artie isn’t a huge fan of canned tuna, so I came up with this while he was out of town.  To the original potato salad, I added canned tuna (prepared with a little bit of plain Greek yogurt and salt – I do not like mayonnaise) and a sprinkling of sliced black olives.  It wasn’t a perfect Nicoise potato salad since I was working with what I had in the pantry, but it was pretty good and I’d make it again.  Next time I would probably add some halved cherry tomatoes.

Potato Salad NicoiseAll in all, I’d say it was a week of good meals and a creative way to repurpose leftovers.

Pesto Potato and Green Bean Salad

This recipe makes a lot of potato salad.  If you aren’t serving this to a crowd or planning to eat it for multiple meals, you may want to cut the quantities below in half.

Scrub two pounds of red potatoes and then dry potatoes on a kitchen towel.  Cut potatoes in half or in quarters to make bite-sized pieces.  Place potatoes in a large stock pot and cover with cold water.  Bring the potatoes to a boil over high heat.  Boil potatoes until fork tender.

While the potatoes are boiling, wash one pound of green beans and cut into 1-inch pieces.  Just as the potatoes are finishing cooking, add the green beans to the pot and cook for one minute.  Remove the pot from the heat and drain the potatoes and green beans in a large colander.  Run the vegetables under cold water to cool before placing potatoes and green beans in a large bowl.

In a separate bowl, mix together eight ounces pesto (store bought or homemade) and 18 ounces Greek yogurt*.  Top the potato and green bean mixture with the pesto and yogurt mixture and stir gently to combine.  Cover and refrigerate until chilled.  Serve cold.

*The amount of yogurt you use will depend upon how creamy you like your potato salad.  The first time I made this, I used a 1 to 1 ratio of pesto to yogurt and the salad was too dry.  The last time I made it, I used the measurements above and it came out much better.  Also, if you aren’t a fan of the tangy flavor of Greek yogurt (which I love) you could substitute sour cream or plain yogurt for up to one-third of the Greek yogurt.