POTATO AND LEEK PANCAKE
A golden, crispy potato pancake with a creamy filling of sautéed leeks — the contrast
in textures is both surprising and very satisfying. Serve it with a green salad for
lunch or a light evening meal, or serve wedges of the pancake as an ideal companion
to any poached or grilled fish.
Serves 2 or 3 as a main dish, 4 as a side dish
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5 large Yukon Gold or russet baking potatoes, peeled
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 large leeks, white and light green parts only, rinsed well and sliced into thin rings
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
3 tablespoons olive oil
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon finely minced fresh parsley, for garnish
||Coarsely grate the potatoes into a mixing bowl and cover with cold water.|
||Melt 1 tablespoon of the butter in a medium-size skillet over medium heat.
Add the leeks and cook, stirring, until softened but not browned, 5 to 7 minutes.
Season lightly with salt and pepper and set aside.|
||Drain the potatoes and dry them well in a kitchen towel.|
||In a 10-inch nonstick skillet, heat 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil and 1 tablespoon
butter. When hot, spread half the potatoes in the pan and press down with a wooden spoon.
Sprinkle with salt, pepper, nutmeg, and half the thyme. Over the potato layer, spread
the leeks in a thin layer and sprinkle with the flour. Cover that with the rest of the
potato mixture. Press down with a wooden spoon to make a neat pancake and sprinkle with
salt, pepper, nutmeg, and the remaining thyme.|
||Cook for 8 to 10 minutes over medium heat. Shake the pan from time to time to
make sure the pancake isn't sticking. If necessary, loosen it with a spatula. Put a
large plate on top of the skillet and invert the pancake onto the plate. The cooked
side should be very crusty. Heat the remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil and 1 tablespoon
butter in the skillet. Very carefully slide the pancake back into the skillet, uncooked
side down; cook for 8 minutes longer, pressing down occasionally with a flat lid and
shaking the skillet to keep the pancake from sticking.|
||Remove the finished pancake to a warmed plate, sprinkle with the parsley, cut into
wedges and serve immediately.|
Excerpted from EVERYBODY EATS WELL IN BELGIUM COOKBOOK copyright © 1996 Ruth Van Waerebeek.
Reprinted with the permission of Workman Publishing Co., Inc. All Rights Reserved.