How to Make Hasselback Potatoes
I’d first heard about Hasselback potatoes from a lovely girl whom I still consider a dear friend, even though we haven’t been in the same country for almost four years now. I sometimes wonder how people managed to keep friendships before Facebook, Skype and Whatsapp. Luckily, we’re not in that situation, so we sometimes sip on our coffees and catch up or remember old times. But I digress. The first time I heard about this tasty work of art invented by Swedish restaurant chefs, I thought to myself it was an overestimated baked potato. How wrong I was!
Last week, I went over to visit Denise and her family, so we could enjoy the first days of autumn in her garden, where she takes all the fabulous food photos you always drool over on our blog. She wanted to prepare these Hasselback potatoes, which I gladly agreed to. I was curious whether the taste is worth all the cutting and brushing with oil and baking and brushing and stuffing… oh, you get the drift. If you’re as curious about how to make Hasselback potatoes as I was, here’s a step-by-step tutorial:
Pick equal sized potatoes, so that they all bake at the same time. Any sort of potatoes will do, even the very young ones.
Scrub the potatoes under warm water, using a potato brush. Get all the dirt off these babies, since you won’t be peeling them. Believe me, the skin will become a crunchy delight after spending some time in the oven. Set the potatoes on paper towels to dry.
Preheat the oven to 220°C/ 425°F.
Using a very sharp knife, cut thin slices in each potato, but do not cut all the way. Let the slices stay connected by keeping the bottom intact. Thus, the potato will hold its shape during baking. The number and thickness of the slices will depend on the size of the potatoes, but you may want to consider this: the thinner the slices, the crunchier they will be after baking.
Place the potatoes in a greased oven proof dish and line them up nicely for the next operation.
Brush the potatoes with oil (coconut, olive), butter or fat (we’re curious about duck fat) then generously sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Bake the potatoes for 30 minutes in the pre-heated oven.
Remove the dish from the oven and brush the potatoes with more oil, butter or fat. Make sure you get some grease in between slices as well. Resist temptation to taste.
Get the potatoes back in the oven and bake for another 40 minutes, until golden brown.
Step 10 (optional):
Add some thinly sliced fat cheese (Gouda or Cheddar) in between the potato slices just 5 minutes before the baking time is up. Actually, the possibilities are endless: chorizo, bacon or thinly sliced olives to name a few.
Take the tray filled with appetizing Hasselback potatoes out of the oven and serve them while they’re still warm and crunchy!