May 08, 2007

DBP: potato gratin with olives

Today´s Swedish word: ugn. Means oven.

A. called this Saturday from work (Ericsson is busy these days, keep their employees busy all week round!) to tell me he was really really up for a potato gratin of some kind and I took out my mandoline for slicing the potatoes. (You really have to try and make the best of these last days of winter potatoes, don´t you? Soon you will find nothing but new potatoes in the shops here, and that is the way it should be, by the way.)
Anyway. Before I had the mandoline I was afraid of the knife for my food processor. Then I was afraid of the mandoline, but when I discovered how practical it is and that I really can use it without slicing myself open somewhere (knock on wood) I started to really loving it and now I am afraid of my new Tupperware onion chopper instead. It is this little round container with a rotating lid and a blade inside, so sharp that my hair just stands up when I see it. Ouch.

As I stood there slicing potatoes and carrots with my mandoline and contemplating different flavourings for the gratin I came to think of half a jar lemon-filled green olives in the fridge and said onion chopper. Hmm, I could finish those olives and practise on the chopper!

This gratin came out really, really tasty! I haven´t got a recipe but simply slice some winter potatoes and a carrot, and a small fresh yellow onion. Layer them in a greased dish with chopped green olives, salt and pepper. Pour over fluids of some kind to almost cover, I used milk and creme fraiche whipped together because that was what I had on hand - and bake on medium heat (175-200 C) until the potatoes and carrots are soft and with a nice colour. You can add some grated cheese on the top towards the end if you like to.
We had the gratin with seared fillet of beef, top Swedish well-hung quality, and a salad, on the balcony. Life is sweet sometimes if you try and embrace your very sharp kitchen tools. Now, I could imagine having one of those microplane graters to be afraid of next...

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