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Saturday, October 1, 2011

Parmesan Potatoes

Behold the most delicious potatoes ever! My mom made these for our family while we were growing up, and they have always been one of my favorite dishes. My only complaint is that she would stack the potatoes too much. As you might imagine, the best part of these potatoes is that golden, delicious crust on the outside of each slice. If you stack the potatoes too much, then only a small percentage of the potatoes have that crust. That state of being is an unfortunate and unnecessary occurrence. You may need to use a larger pan, or even two pans, so that the potatoes are spread as close to one layer thick as possible, but it is really, really worth it.

The other thing I want to throw out there is that potatoes have really gotten a bum rap lately... kind of like what eggs went through in years past. While, obviously, if you always eat your potatoes deep fried or mashed with a stick of butter, they are not a very good meal choice. By themselves, however, potatoes are a healthy and delicious addition to any meal. They're definitely a better choice than pasta. In fact, serving for serving, I would even argue that potatoes are a better choice than brown rice! I love this nutrition data site and suggest you go compare the nutrition data of potatoes with your other side dish options if you have been hesitant to eat potatoes lately.

This dish is nice because you get all the flavor and "pow!" of a sinful side dish while actually being quite restrained. You can use any kind of potato. In this case, I used little red potatoes, but you can use russets or Yukon Gold, or... whatever. I like to leave the skin on. I like the way it looks; I like the way it tastes. Plus the skin has a large percentage of the fiber and nutrients of the potato. Slice the potatoes thinly, about 1/8 of an inch. I use a mandolin, but you can slice them the old fashioned way or with a food processor.

Be sure you've started your oven to preheating to 425° F. Spray a baking sheet with cooking oil. Place your potato slices in a bowl and toss with a little bit of melted butter. You only need a tiny bit! The potatoes just need to have a little bit of a sheen from the butter (or oil, if you prefer).

Lay the potato slices out on the baking sheet as close to one layer thick as possible. In this case, I had plenty of room on my baking sheet. When things are a little tighter, I use a shingle pattern to maximize my use of space. Sprinkle the slices with a little salt (go easy, Parmesan is already pretty salty), some pepper, a little grated Parmesan cheese (I use the stuff in the green can for this application), and a little bit of paprika.

Bake until the potatoes are cooked through and golden. Depending on how many you are baking, it could be anywhere from 20-40 minutes. For best results, serve immediately!

Parmesan Potatoes
Yield: 4 side servings

3-4 cups of sliced (1/8 inch thick) potatoes
1 TBS melted butter
3 TBS grated Parmesan cheese
dash paprika
salt & pepper to taste

Toss the potatoes in the melted butter. Lay out on a greased baking sheet as close to one layer thick as possible. Sprinkle with cheese and paprika. Salt and pepper to taste. Bake in a 425° F oven until the potatoes are cooked through and golden. Baking time will depend on how thickly you stack your potatoes, but start checking after 20 minutes. Serve immediately.

3 comments:

  1. This looks wonderful. I am going to make this tonight. Thanks for the idea. I love making everything as close to scratch and as natural as possible.

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    Replies
    1. This came out wonderful, the taste was delicious and the crispness was perfect. Definetly a new addition to my dinners.

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  2. Made these last night -- delicious!! Thank you for posting the recipe.

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