Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Potato Onion Mushroom Tart Thing
This extravaganza of wanton yumminess was inspired by a post for Welsh Onion Cake over at The Great Vegan Conspiracy (http://thegvc.wordpress.com), which - if you've yet to have the pleasure - is a terrific blog that seeks to recreate the sorts of cozy, podgy British food I grew up on, in a way that is incredibly evocative of childhood comfort food while remaining completely vegan: a noble goal if ever there was one! Anyway, midway through a bright, sunny, but proto-wintry November Sunday morning, I was feeling extremely hungry but uncertain what to do about it when - AHA! - inspiration struck, and I remembered this recipe. As hath ever been my wont, I decided to tinker with it and see what happened; there were some mushrooms in the fridge, in danger of passing their prime unloved and uneaten, and since I figured that their presence in a dish consisting primarily of potatoes, onions and fat couldn't possibly come amiss, they were duly sliced up and thrown in. With the addition of a few extra herbs, this not only made the kitchen smell incredible, but turned out to be both beautiful and delicious: a dish that will surely be making reappearances on our table in the upcoming months. As we were feeling a bit nostalgic for the old sod - bless 'im! - we put on our favorite Magpie Lane CD, The Oxford Ramble, and sauteed a couple cans of old-school Heinz baked beans with some sage, smoked yeast, a chopped onion and the rest of those mushrooms to go alongside. In short: the perfect way to start the day at the crack of noon!
Potato, Onion, and Mushroom Tart Thing
~ 4 medium potatoes, thinly sliced (I used Yukon Gold)
~ 1 large onion, sliced into thin crescents, then sliced again (quarter crescents!)
~ 2 cups thinly sliced mushrooms (about a dozen good-sized 'shrooms)
~ Salt, pepper, thyme, marjoram, tarragon
~ 2 tbsp. each: melted vegan margarine, olive oil (or could use 4 tbsp. of either, I just like a combination)
~ Paprika for garnish
~ Preheat the oven to 400 degrees fahrenheit.
~ Coat a deep-dish pie dish with cooking spray (I used a straight-sided quiche pan).
~ Cover the bottom of the pie dish with an overlapping layer of about 1/3 of the sliced potatoes, followed by a layer of half the onions, then half the sliced mushrooms.
~ Sprinkle with salt, pepper, thyme, marjoram, and tarragon, topping with about 1/3 of the margarine/oil mixture.
~ Repeat the layering process (including spices, oil mixture), then end with a - neatly overlapping, if you can manage it! - layer of potatoes.
~ Top with the remaining oil mixture, a few grinds of salt and pepper, and a sprinkling of paprika for garnish.
~ Cover with foil and bake for about 45 minutes.
~ Remove foil, raise the heat to 425, and bake another 20 minutes, until beauteously browned and beginning to get crispy.
~ Allow to set up about 10 minutes before cutting into slices and serving (since it was brunch and we were feeling a bit British, we had some baked beans on the side, but this would - and certainly will, in our house - make a great supper dish with a salad or some other veggie dish on the side).