This rustic French recipe was developed by Le Syndicat Interprofessionnel du Reblochon to persuade people to eat more cheese. Reblochon is a raw milk cheese sadly unavailable in Australia, due to a ban on soft raw milk cheese imports.
We like to make this when the cold weather sets in with organic local fave Mountain Man - a mild, washed-rind cows milk cheese (styled off Reblochon) made by L’Artisan French cheesemaker Matthieu Mégard in South-West Victoria. You can just about taste his idyllic childhood in the French Alps. This is kind of like a potato gratin with all its comforting carby cheesey togetherness but so much more.
Serves: 6-8 people Prep time: 20 mins Cook time: 35 mins
- 1.5kg waxy potatoes – red Desirée, Nicola or Royal Blues work well
- 20gm butter
- 200g streaky free-range bacon cut into batons/lardons
- 1 medium onion approx. 150gm – peeled and thinly sliced
- 150ml dry white wine
- 200ml Crème Fraîche d'Isigny Tribehou
- 1 clove garlic cut in half
- salt and pepper
- 1 whole L’Artisan Mountain Man – 500gm – cut in half horizontally making 2 discs
- Preheat the oven to 190C.
- Pop a large pan of salted water on to boil. Give the potatoes a quick wash but no need to peel. You may need to cut up any larger ones so they’re all roughly the same size. Cook until tender but not falling apart (approx. 15 min) then drain well and set aside.
- While the potatoes are cooking/cooling, melt the butter in a large frying pan on a medium heat. Add bacon and onion, cooking until the onions soften (approx. 5 min). Deglaze with white wine stirring to collect all the tasty bits at the bottom. Take off the heat and stir the crème fraîche
- Rub the peeled garlic clove all around the inside of a wide, ovenproof dish. Once the potatoes are cool enough to touch, cut them into medium-thick slices (approx. 1cm)
- In the ovenproof dish lay a bed of half the potatoes, spoon over half onion/bacon mixture, seasoning with salt and pepper. Create a second layer of potatoes and onion/bacon before topping with both cheese discs placed side by side rind facing up.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes, until bubbling hot and lightly brown. Serve with a crisp green salad, pickles, charcuterie and a well-chilled white wine for a true French fest.
- It’s easiest to cut the cheese cold from the fridge. Leave the cheese halves in the fridge during prep time, removing only when required to crown the potatoes.