~ The Hasselback Potato: A Majestic Baked Potato ~
The next time baked potatoes are on your mind or menu, and you have a bit of extra time, make a batch of sexy, stylish Swedish Hasselback potatoes. Want to feel like a rock star? Go the extra mile and make them using using small, fingerling potatoes -- people adore fancy-schmancy, darling-to-look-at, petite food. Place two or three on a plate next to a perfectly-cooked steak or pass a tray of them around at a cocktail party -- majestic -- to say the least.
The Hasselbecken Tavern was established in the 1700's as a small red hut located in a hazel thicket in Stockholm, which is how it got its name. The Hasselbacken Hotel and Restaurant opened in 1853 in a grand, new building. It was a destination for the rich upperclass and quickly developed a reputation for grandiose gatherings and celebrations. Hasselbacken Potatoes were invented by their chef in the 1940's and were an instant success. Still prepared the same way, here's how they appear on their menu today:
Hasselbackspotatis serverad med oxfilé, baconlindad haricots vertes, gremoulatabakad tomat, konjaks velouté samt senapskräm
Hasselbacken potatoes served with beef tenderloin, bacon wrapped green beans, baked tomato gremolata, cognac velouté and mustard cream
A bit about fingerling potatoes: These small, elongated, finger-shaped potatoes come from a family of heritage potatoes that naturally grow smaller than conventional potatoes. They are fully mature when harvested and should not be confused with new potatoes, which are potatoes harvested before they mature. The three most popular varieties are: the Yellow Russian Banana (pictured here), the Peruvian Purple, and, the Swedish Peanut fingerling.
Cut each potato into 1/4" slices, stopping short of cutting through to the bottom with each slice.
Note: My "trick" is to place the potato in the trough of the carving board I use to slice roasts. Doing this stops the knife, making it impossible to slice to the bottom.
8 tablespoons salted butter
and stir in:
1/2 teaspoon sea salt & 1 teaspoon white pepper
no-stick cooking spray
Using a pastry brush, lightly paint a bit more of the melted butter mixture over the tops and liberally sprinkle coarse sea salt over all.
~ Step 7. Bake on center rack of preheated 375 degree oven 45-50 minutes, or until potatoes are bubbly and golden brown. They will be crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. Serve ASAP -- I like to reheat and drizzle/dribble the remaining butter mixture over the tops.
Special Equipment List: cutting board; chef's knife; spoon; pastry brush; baking pan; parchment paper
Cook's Note: To get my tips for baking a conventional potato, read my post ~ Dear Perfectly Baked Potato: Your Crispy Skin and Fluffy Center, Make My Steaks Taste Even Better!!! ~ by clicking into Categories, 4, 10, 15 or 20.
"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti
(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2016)