Hasselback Potato

Hasselback Potato
Hasselback Potato

 

 

Potato in any form is always a favorite and baked potato can tempt you anytime. Hasselback potato can serve as a whole meal whether be for breakfast or dinner. Russet potato is ideal although it can be baked with other varieties too.

Hasselback Potato or Potato à la Hasselbacken (Swedish: Hasselbackspotatis) are a type of baked potato (Swedish), where the potatoes are about halfway cut through into thin slices; butter, breadcrumbs, and almonds are added on top of the potatoes. It was created in 1953 by Leif Elisson from Värmland, which was trainee chef at restaurant Hasselbacken on Djurgården in Stockholm  [Wikipedia].

Ingredients

  • Russet potatoes  2 or medium-sized potato 4
  • Unsalted butter (melted) 2 tbsp (optional and I preferred to use only oil)
  • Olive oil 2  tbsp
  • Sea salt  1 tsp
  • Freshly ground black pepper   ½ tsp or to taste
  • Chilli flajes 1 tsp
  • Fresh herbs or dried herbs 2 tsp
  • Shredded cheddar cheese and Parmesan cheese 1 tbsp each
  • Sour cream   2 tbsp (optional)
  • Chopped chives   2 tsp

Method

  • Preheat the oven to 220ºC/200ºC  (400 or 420ºF).
  • Use a sharp knife to cut slits into the baking potatoes. These should be  about 1/8 to ¼”apart, stopping about ¼ inch from the bottom apart and go about two-thirds of the way through the potato. To ensure  that the slits do not go all the way through (otherwise the potato will fall apart) place the potato between two ladles or chopsticks as shown while slicing

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  • Take the oil and half the butter  in a bowl and add the pepper, chili flakes, chives, and salt. Mix to give a smooth suspension
  • Brush the bottom of a baking tray with the melted butter or oil and transfer the potatoes to the tray. Dribble the potatoes with the spiced oil and place the tray into the oven and cook for 1 hour (exact cooking time depends on the size of potatoes used). About every 20 minutes use a pastry brush to baste the potatoes in the butter and olive oil mix that they placed in. When basting,  the ends may get quite crispy. To stop this, after 40 minutes wrap the ends carefully in a small square of aluminium foil.
  • After 40 minutes baking drizzle the potatoes with the remaining butter. Return to the oven and bake for another 25 to 35 minutes, or until nicely browned. Sprinkle the cheese and some breadcrumbs and bake for another 5 minutes.
  • Check with a knife or fork to make sure they are soft in the center.
  • Remove from oven and serve with cream.

Chef’s Note

  • To prevent browning of potatoes keep them in a  bowl of water till all potatoes are ready.
  • It is fine to bake the potatoes in the skin but if they are too thick it will be a good idea to peel the potatoes.
  • Often slices of cheese or butter are placed between the slits in the potatoes to get droolicious bake

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Shahi Paneer

shahi paneer

 

As one is aware any shahi dish is quite rich with a gravy based on dry fruits such as almonds, melon seeds and cashew added along with a dairy product like yogurt, curds or cream.  Sometimes I do wonder how the nawabs lived on rich bases of this kind forever!

S is an anti-yogurt  man and naturally any dish made for him  has to be devoid of yogurt (at least explicitly!)

I decided to add peas too as all of us love peas in any dish

Ingredients  (For 4 servings)

  • Cottage cheese/Paneer (cut into cubes)   300 g
  • Dried red  chilli (Kashmiri or Bydage)  8
  • Green cardamom or black cardamom 2
  • Soaked cashew  10 or 12
  • Almonds soaked  (optional) 10
  • Cnion 2 big or 3 medium-sized cut into slices
  • Tomatoes (chopped)  4 medium or 2 big ones
  • Ginger (finely chopped)  2″ piece
  • Beaten curd or milk  ½ cup
  • Bay leaf  1
  • Cumin seeds 1 tsp
  • Oil 2 tbsp
  • Cumin Powder ½ tsp
  • Turmeric powder ½ tsp
  • Chilli Powder ½ tsp
  • Garam Masala ½ tsp
  • Salt 1 tsp
  • Water ½ cup
  • Dried kasoori methi (finely crushed) 1 tsp
  • Coriander leaves (finely chopped) 1 tbsp

Method

  • In a wok heat 1 tbsp of oil and saute onions till they start looking translucent.  Add the red chilies and cardamom and saute for 2 minutes before adding the  diced tomatoes to it.
  • When the tomatoes soften add the cashew and let the mix cool to room temperature. Add the finely chopped ginger to this mix and puree to a fine paste in a blender.
  • While the mix for the puree is cooling heat the remaining oil in a wok and temper with cumin seeds, add the bay leaf and saute on low flame for a few seconds before adding the turmeric powder, chili powder garam masala, and salt.
  • When the raw smell is gone add the finely blended puree and let it start bubbling. At this stage add the finely crushed methi and cook for a minute before adding water.
  • When the gravy starts bubbling add paneer and cook for 5 minutes. Add water and keep on low flame for a couple of minutes. Remove from fire and garnish with coriander leaves.
  • Serve hot with chapathis.

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Chef’s Note

  • If you like to get a smooth silky texture as obtained in the restaurants strain the ground puree through a colander before transferring to the wok.