Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Potato-Bacon Torte

Well sometimes the simplest things really are best. I had my doubts at to how yummy this dish might be. It won't rank among my all time faves, but it will be made again and I suspect often since it was raved about by my husband. What I liked about it: easy (using store bought pie dough), easily vegetarian (just use veggie bacon or a veggie you like like onion or tomato), super frugal (even buying the pie crust I think with the salad the dinner was like $8) and it was great for a cold night since it used the oven and was very hearty. The only thing you must have to make this recipe easy is a mandoline or a v slicer so you can easily make paper thin slices of the potato. The cons, the edges burnt even with the application of foil and the yolk got too brown I just realized now as I am getting the link for the recipe, I left out the cheese!  We were even marveling at the fact that it didn't have cheese and we loved it.  How did I miss that.  The other deviations I made were I steeped the cream longer and added a pinch or two of granulated garlic.

See how the top is too brown:(
Potato-Bacon Torte                                  

4    strips bacon
3    sprigs fresh thyme
2/3 c  heavy cream
2    Pie Crusts,recipe follows
3    medium baking potatoes peeled
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 c  grated Gruyere cheese
1    egg yolk,whisked with a  splash of water
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
In a skillet over medium heat, cook the bacon until just crispy. Drain
on paper towel lined plate and set aside. Crumble the bacon when cool
to the touch.
Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, heat the thyme and cream over low heat
to a bare simmer. Turn off the heat and let steep for about 5 minutes.
Remove the thyme sprigs.
Remove the pie pan from the refrigerator. Slice the potatoes in half
lengthwise and then finely slice the potatoes. Working in circles,
arrange the potato slices in the pie crust, stopping to season each
layer with salt, pepper, and about 1/4 of the crumbled bacon. Continue
layering until the pie pan is nearly full. Top with an even layer of
the cheese and gently pour cream around and over the entire pie,
allowing it to seep down between the potato slices. (You may not use
all the cream.)
Roll out the remaining disk of refrigerated dough. Cover the pie with
the dough and crimp the edges closed. Brush the top and edges of the
crust with egg wash. Make a few slits in the center of the top crust,
for the steam to escape, and put the pie pan on a baking sheet. Bake
the torte until the crust is browned and crispy and the potatoes are
cooked through, about 50 to 60 minutes. If the crust edges get too
brown, cover them with some strips of aluminum foil. Remove the pie
from the oven and let rest at least 15 minutes before cutting into
wedges and serving.
Pie Crust:
1 cup butter (2 sticks), cubed and chilled
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
8 to 10 tablespoons ice water

Put the butter, flour, and salt in the food processor, and pulse
lightly just until the mixture resembles wet sand. Add the water, 1
tablespoon at a time, pulsing briefly after each spoonful of water.
Keep adding water until the dough just begins to gather into larger
clumps. Transfer equal amounts of the dough into 2 resealable plastic
bags and pat each into a disk. Let rest in the refrigerator for at
least 30 minutes. Remove 1 of the disks from the bag to a flour coated
surface. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough out to a 10-inch round.
Gently fit the rolled dough into a 9-inch pie pan, and refrigerate
while you prepare the torte ingredients.
Yield: 2 (9-inch) pie crusts

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