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~ The Hasselback Potato: A Majestic Baked Potato ~

IMG_1830The 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.

DSC_2524The 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 1invented 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 

IMG_1858A 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.

IMG_1781~ Step 1.  To make 24 fingerling potatoes, which serves 6-8:

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.

IMG_1789~ Step 2.  In a small bowl, melt

8 tablespoons salted butter

and stir in:

1/2  teaspoon sea salt & 1 teaspoon white pepper

IMG_1799~ Step 3. Spray 6-8 individual-sized au gratin dishes with

no-stick cooking spray

IMG_1813~ Step 4.  Two at a time, submerge potatoes in the seasoned butter mixture, allowing them to sit for 10-15 seconds prior to transferring them to prepared dishes.

IMG_1833~ Step 5. When I am adding an herb, I like to shake a few dried rosemary leaves over the top, and, IMG_1849I take a moment to poke a few leaves down into a few or all of the slices in each each potato.

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.

IMG_1852~ Step 6. Transfer au gratins to a baking pan lined with parchment paper.

~ 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.

IMG_1923Hasselback Potatoes:  A Majestic Baked Potato:  Recipe yields 6-8 servings.

Special Equipment List:  cutting board; chef's knife; spoon; pastry brush; baking pan; parchment paper

6a0120a8551282970b01b7c740a1d4970bCook'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)


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