Italian Potato and Ham Pie

Italian Potato and Ham Pie

I say this is an Italian Potato and Ham Pie, because I found the recipe on an Italian website – and I used mozzarella and parmesan cheese – but apart from that, I don’t think there’s anything specifically Italian about it. What it is about, is a recipe that is so easy, and ultimately so delicious, that you just have to try it.

INGREDIENTS

  • Potatoes
  • Two egg yolks
  • Cheese – the original recipe calls for caciocavallo cheese, but I couldn’t get this and so substituted it with mozzarella
  • Grana Padana cheese (or parmesan)
  • Fresh Spinach
  • Sliced ham
  • Olive oil
  • Garlic
  • Salt & pepper
  • Rosemary – fresh is best, but dried will work, too

METHOD

  • Boil the potatoes until ready for mashing – drain, season with salt and pepper, add the grana padana (amount according to taste) and mash, the add the egg yolks, salt & pepper and rosemary and combine, then use of the mixture to line a dish or oven proof tin
  • Saute the spinach in the olive oil and garlic – when wilted, drain, so that all of the excess water is removed
  • Put a layer of the garlicky spinach over the potato, then a layer of the cheese you are using, then a layer of sliced ham
  • Add another layer of cheese and top with the remainder of the potato, pressing it down, so that it is compact
  • Brush a little oil over the surface, and bake for around 50 minutes in an oven, pre-heated to 190°C – it’ll then be ready to eat immediately or saved for later, and eaten cold

Photo credit : www.giallozafferano.com

Photo credit : www.giallozafferano.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

Simple Supper, No Fuss

Simple Supper, No Fuss

Sometimes, all you want, is the simplest meal, which doesn’t take forever, uses just one roasting tin and packs an absolute punch in terms of flavours. And this is just what this meal provides. Wildly tasty, and if you like your cheese on the strong-side, this probably definitely a dish for you. Five ingredients, and one of those is olive oil. And, bet you will probably have all of them in the fridge or cupboard – a bag of fresh spinach, chestnut mushrooms, gnocchi, gorgonzola cheese, olive oil & seasoning. And that is it. You can probably guess how it’s done, but here you go. Here’s what we did.

The gnocchi that we had was actually spinach gnocchi, but regular gnocchi would definitely work just as well, as the real flavours come from the cheese. I could have gone a whole lot stronger with the blue cheese too, but a fairly standard Gorgonzola worked perfectly.

 

METHOD

  • Roughly quarter the mushrooms (chestnuts definitely five a more nutty flavour) and toss them, with the gnocchi, in a roasting tin, in olive oil and season according to your taste, with salt and pepper;
  • Roast for about 20-25 minutes, stirring frequently so that nothing sticks to the bottom of the tin;
  • Add the fresh spinach (we used about three quarters of a large bag) and mix it in, then crumble the blue cheese over the mixture. (I have no “off” switch when it comes to cheese, and so the whole pack went in);
  • Cook for about 5 minutes – or until the cheese is beginning to melt, but there is still texture to it;
  • Take out of the oven, sprinkle with fresh, chopped spinach leaves and serve.

We had this with pitta breads, spread with garlic butter and heated up in the oven, while it was being served. Just enough time to roast the garlic pieces and heat up the breads. I cannot emphasis enough how tasty this dish is – creamy and peppery and robust. And, if you forget the pack of blue cheese and gnocchi, it is almost super food. I mean, it is green…