Cheese and potato nests

Preparation time
30 minutes

Baking time
15–20 minutes

Serves
6 as a side dish

The Nids de tartiflette recipe was the brainchild of the Reblochon cheese producers in the 1980s. With so many other French cheeses to compete with, they needed to find a way of making theirs more popular, and they did it with this cheesy potato gratin.

Reblochon is a cheese that comes from the Haute-Savoie in the Alps. It’s made out of raw cow’s milk and has a pungent aroma and nutty taste. If you can’t find Reblochon, or you prefer a milder flavor, replace it with Brie and make a Brieflette (doesn’t have quite the same ring, though, does it?).

Traditionally this dish is quite a heavy winter staple, but make it my way and you can even serve it on a hot day with a side salad.

By Rachel Khoo
From The Little Paris Kitchen: Cooking with Rachel Khoo

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp soft butter
  • 1 lb firm-fleshed potatoes (such as fingerling)
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 7 oz lardons or cubes of smoked bacon
  • 6½ tbsp dry white wine
  • 8-oz piece of Reblochon cheese, cubed

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F and brush a 6-cup muffin tin with the butter. Peel the potatoes and use the julienne blade on a mandoline to make thin matchsticks (or slice by hand).
  2. Put the onion, garlic, bay leaf, and lardons into a large nonstick frying pan and cook until the lardons are golden. Add the wine and reduce until only a couple of tablespoons of liquid remain. Stir in the potato matchsticks and take off the heat, then remove the bay leaf and stir in the Reblochon cubes.
  3. Divide the potato mix between the cups in the muffin tin and bake for 15–20 minutes or until golden and bubbling. Serve immediately.