This is a great “Meatless Monday” entrée served with a salad or soup..
Traditionally, tartiflette is made with bacon. Here we have substituted smoked salt for the bacon. My favorite is Salish Alder Smoked Salt from www.artisansalt.com , Red Alderwood, a commonly used wood for smoking salmon, works very well with potatoes, too. A little goes a long way on flavor. Cooking tartiflette in a cast iron pan is a good use of energy because once the pan is heated through, it is possible to cook the potatoes quickly and thoroughly.
Aged Grass-fed Cheese is a Low Cost Nutrient Dense Food
Each one-ounce portion of a 100% Grass-fed 100% Whole Milk Cheese (whole milk is the least processed form of milk) in this recipe is approximately 110 calories, and provides the most broad -based nutrient dense benefits that go way beyond protein and calcium. Containing all of the B-complex vitamins, especially Vitamin B-12 which is often lacking in a plant-based diet, in addition to the top four fat-soluble vitamins: vitamins A,D,E and K and greater levels of Omega 3 (average of 100 milligrams from one ounce of most grass-fed cheeses, this is my “go to” choice for a vegetarian based meal.
Fermented or Aged Cheese may be tolerated by those with lactose intolerance
Cow’s milk is second on the Centers for Disease Control’s list of 8 food types to be major food allergens in the US. That is why I have included very few recipes in this book that call for dairy products, except for grass-fed butter and cheese. I also offer non-dairy alternatives, whenever possible. As far as cheese, I appreciate dairy free cheese on an intellectual level, however, my palate prefers the flavor satisfaction of the real dairy version. It’s just my preference.
The fermentation or aging process of making certain type of cheese (Pecorino Romano, Gruyere, Aged Gouda, Aged Cheddar, Provolone, etc) helps to break down the milk proteins and fats in the milk and may lower one’s risk for an allergic response by their immune system, therefore, it may be a beneficial anti-inflammatory food for you, even if you are generally allergic to dairy. It’s all about weighing out the pros and cons when it comes to dairy cheese, especially cows milk -based cheese. Because the lactose content is converted to lactic acid and reduced considerably in the fermentation process, those with lactose intolerance may actually be able to tolerate a small amount of aged cheese. This may not be true with those of us that are allergic to the amines in fermented cheese. A common allergic reaction to amines is a migraine headache, in which case you may want to avoid all dairy cheeses and check with a healthcare practitioner to find out the actual source of reaction before consuming any cheese.
Yield: 8 ample servings with 1 ounce Rembrandt Cheese per portion
2½ Pounds Potatoes of Choice, preferably small ones. I like purple potatoes, of course!
2 Tablespoons Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
1 Medium Red Onion, peeled, cut in half, sliced thin and let rest for 15 minutes to release polyphenols
1/2 Cup Dry White Wine
Sea Salt (to taste) and Smoked Sea Salt (also to taste)
Black Pepper (to taste)
1/2 teaspoon Dried Thyme
½ Pound Aged Gouda cheese (preferably 2 or more years) coarse-grated
1/4 Cup Vegetarian Bacon Bits or Onion Crisps (optional garnish)
- Cook unpeeled potatoes in boiling water until just tender in the center. Drain off the potatoes and let them cool down to room temperature; then cut into ½” dice.
- While the potatoes are cooling, pre-heat a cast-iron or stainless steel skillet; add the 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the pan, along with the sliced red onion and the ½ teaspoon of dried thyme. Sauté the onion mixture for five minutes until tender. Season (to taste) with a pinch of smoked salt and black pepper. Turn off heat, set aside and let the onion mixture sit (for flavor to develop).
- To assemble the dish, prepare a 9” x 9” baking pan by placing a tablespoon of the cooked onion mixture at the bottom of the pan; then spread to coat the entire pan bottom.
- Check potato mixture and adjust salt and pepper if needed then mix in white wine; mix well.
- Layer one third of the potato mixture on top of the first layer of onion mixture.
- Layer one third of the grated Aged Gouda cheese on top of the potato mixture; then another layer of red onion mixture.
- Continue layering successively, until all products are used; finish with a layer of Aged Gouda cheese.
- Place in a 350 Degree oven for 20-30 minutes, until the top of the casserole turns a golden brown .
- Garnish with vegetarian bacon bits or onion crisps (thin sliced shallot fried in 375 º F. grape seed oil until crisp)
Yes, You Can still Eat Potatoes!
When you eat hot potatoes, the starch in them convert to sugar producing a higher glycemic index (a GI of about 75 compared to cold potatoes at 55,respectively) which impacts your blood sugar levels . When you cook the potatoes and then let them cool down before assembling the casserole, the potatoes partially convert to a resistant starch – a soluble fiber that is actually a pre-biotic that we are finding is beneficial to your digestive health. The key to maintaining the benefits of resistant starch from the potato is to only reheat the dish to less than 130 degrees F. This method works for rice, legume and pasta as well. So, instead of eating these starches right out of the oven or off the stove, let them cool down and reheat slightly before consuming them and, of course, always eat in moderation. It is best to check with your health practitioner if starches are on your “do not eat” list.
Aged Gouda cheese has the highest content of Vitamin K-2 in the cheese world, at 75mg per ounce. K2 is a fat-soluble vitamin that helps your bones and teeth absorb calcium. It is also heart and brain protective, and may play a role in cancer prevention. Gouda cheese is also an excellent source of protein and calcium.
*Conjugated Linoleic Acid: Although still controversial, CLA is a fatty acid that may help with the reduction of body fat in combination with exercising, by speeding one’s metabolism. It may also helpful in the prevention of certain cancers. Our bodies do not produce CLA and so the best sources are from grass-fed animal products .I prefer aged cheeses as a source of CLA with my semi-vegetarian diet.
© 2018 JunePagan