Granted, we settling into a lot of autumn and winter comfort food phase here but much of this is driven by a need to use up some ingredients that are left over from other things. In this case some large potatoes, mushrooms and a red pepper. This one has been adapted from Mark Bittman’s recipe in NYTimes Cooking and we’ve added in layers of mushrooms and red peppers just to round it out more as a meal that as a side. We also used a few more cheeses than the original recipe called for and, again, that was just because we decided to have this for dinner, on its own.
For this you’ll need: x2 large russet potatoes (peeled), 1-2 cups heavy cream, 1-2 cups mushrooms (we used crimini, sliced), 1 large red bell pepper (cored and sliced in 1/4″ pieces), 3-4 Tbsp unsalted butter, 1/2 cup dry white wine, 1-2 cups cheddar cheese (grated), 1-2 cups mozzarella (grated), 1 cup parmesan (grated), olive oil, salt, pepper and a pinch of ground nutmeg.
Preheat the oven to 400.
Heat 1-2 Tbs olive oil in a skillet and cook the sliced mushrooms over medium heat until browned – about 5 mins – stirring a couple of times. Deglaze the pan by pouring 1/4 cup of the wine in, stir it around, and raise the heat. Cook until wine has evaporated – 2-3 mins. Remove the mushrooms from the skillet and set aside in a bowl. Now do the same with the red pepper slices; cook them in 1-2 Tbsp oil until browned and deglaze the pan with the remaining 1/4 cup wine. Cook down until all the wine is evaporated and set aside for later use.
Slice the peeled potatoes into thin slices – about 1/8″ each if you can. Arrange them, face down, slightly overlapping and in a single layer in the bottom of a 9″ oven proof skillet. Add a few pats of butter and spread the cooked mushrooms across the surface. Sprinkle a small amount of the grated cheeses over this and then add a second layer of sliced potatoes – same fashion, slightly overlapping and in a single layer. Add a few more pats of butter to this layer then add the cooked red peppers. Cover with some shredded cheeses and then add another, top layer of sliced potatoes to cover the whole thing in one single layer. Add a small amount of grated cheeses to the top holding on to some grated cheese to add later.
Pour the cream over the potato layers until it comes up to about 3/4 of the way up the side of the skillet. Place the skillet over medium/high heat and bring the cream to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium/low and cook the cream/potatoes until the cream has reduced by about half – 10-12 mins.
Place the skillet into the preheated oven and let look until just turning golden – about 15 mins – and then reduce the heat to 300. Cook until the potatoes are soft enough for a fork to easily pass through them when poked – about 15 mins.
Add the rest of your grated cheeses over the top and put back into the oven and cook until the cheeses are melted and golden – about 5-8 mins.
Remove from oven and let stand for 10 mins or so before serving.