I spotted this recipe in the book “Good Cooking the new essentials” by Jill Dupleix. She claims to have pinched the idea from the cafeteria at Rome airport, where it is served up in enormous quantities. She loves it and I was keen to give it a try myself.
Essentially it’s finely sliced potatoes baked with tomatoes, garlic and herbs. It looks and smells glorious and is great served with cooked meats such as steak, chops or chicken. There are capers in the original which I omitted as I’m not a fan of them. It takes an hour to bake so it’s the sort of thing you can shove in the oven and leave to cook while you lavish all your attention on getting the meat right.
1kg all-purpose potatoes
1x400g can of chopped tomatoes (for those with a huge tomato harvest to use up, you could obviously use the equivalent of cooked, skinned tomatoes)
2 cloves garlic (I used more)
½tsp dried oregano
200g cherry tomatoes
2 tblsp roughly chopped parsley
Preheat the oven to 190°C / 170 fan / gas mk 5.
Peel and finely slice the potatoes using a food processor, mandolin, or by hand. Layer in a large oiled roasting tin or dish. Add 250 ml water and salt and pepper. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes.
Put the chopped tomatoes in a bowl with the crushed garlic, 2 tblsp olive oil, oregano and 1 tblsp of the parsley, salt and pepper. Mix together. Remove the foil from the potatoes and spread the tomato mixture on top.
Cut the cherry tomatoes in half and scatter on top of everything. Put back in the oven and bake for 30 minutes more, by which time the potatoes should be cooked and starting to crisp at the edges.
Sprinkle with the other half of the chopped parsley before serving.
Serves 4 generously, would probably stretch to 6 as a side dish.