In the intro to this recipe for Potatoes with Porcini from The Country Cooking of Italy, author Colman Andrews tells us a little about the thrifty ways of the people of Liguria. When procini season rolls around, Ligurians stretch their pricy 'shrooms by bulking them up with inexpensive potatoes. Baked gratin style, the potatoes have a chance to take on all of lovely qualities of the porcinis.
What Worked: We loved the way the porcini infuse the thinly sliced spuds. More bang for your porcini buck.
What Didn't: All's clear here.
Suggested Tweaks: We're wondering what would happen if we added porcinis to a creamy potato gratin recipe. Hmm.
As always with our Cook the Book feature, we have five (5) copies of The Country Cooking of Italy to give away.
- Yield:serves 4
- Active time: 15 minutes
- Total time:1 hour 15 minutes
- 1 pound (500 grams) fresh porcini mushrooms
- 1 small bunch Italian parsley, minced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 pound (500 grams) waxy potatoes, peeled and very thinly sliced
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
Carefully remove the stems from the mushrooms and set the caps aside. Mince the stems and mix them with the parsley and garlic.
Using the oil, generously grease the sides and bottom of a wide, shallow baking dish with a tight-fitting cover. Arrange the potatoes in overlapping layers on the bottom of the dish, salting each layer. Sprinkle half the parsley mixture over the potatoes, then arrange the mushroom caps, cap side up, in a single layer over the potatoes. Sprinkle the remaining parsley mixture over the mushrooms.
Seal the baking dish tightly with aluminum foil, then top the dish with its cover. Bake until the potatoes and mushrooms are tender, about 1 hour. Serve immediately.