Although the fridge has now all but emptied of Christmas goodies the cheese compartment is still heavy with half-eaten lumps, wheels and wedges of every variety of soft, hard, blue, holey, mature and goat. It has become clear that the occasional lunchtime snack is never going to make much headway into this cheesey surplus and we need to start shifting the stuff in more varied and imaginative ways. This tartiflette* is one such way.

Incidentally welcome to 2012 – the year which in the future we will look back on as marking the beginning of the end. Quietus anyone?

Preparation time: 5 – 10 minutes
Cooking time: about an hour
Skill level: easy
Serves: 4 – 6


  • waxy potatoes – thinly sliced – 1kg
  • 1 large onion – thinly sliced
  • 1 clove of garlic – crushed
  • fresh thyme – 10g
  • double cream – 250ml
  • semi-skimmed milk – 320ml
  • mature Brie – 250g
  • olive oil
  • s & p

*OK so this uses the wrong cheese and doesn’t contain any lardons so purists and pedants will probably insist this is not a true tartiflette.

Preheat your oven to 180c/gas mark 4.

Gently fry the onion in some olive until soft and beginning to colour. Set aside.

Strip the leaves from the thyme sprigs and finely chop.

Put the cream, milk, garlic and thyme in a large saucepan and bring to a simmer.

Add the sliced potato, cover with a lid and cook for 5 minutes.

Stir in the cooked onions and season with salt and black pepper.

Butter a suitably sized ovenproof dish.

Chop the Brie into slices.

Place half the potato mixture into the prepared dish and sprinkle over half the cheese.

Repeat, finishing with a layer of cheese.

(At this stage the dish can be set aside and cooked at a later time.)

Bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes until bubbling with a golden crusty top and tender when stabbed with a knife.

Serve as a side or main with a healthy salad.

Verdict: Potato and melted cheese works, this is a fact and this is another excellent example of the genre. Creamy smooth rich filling comfort food.

Drink: Red – we are still bravely drinking our way through our substantial Christmas stash of booze.

Entertainment: The third and final episode of ‘Black Mirror’ followed by Old Jews Telling Jokes.

Happy New Year – You decide when.


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