I love potatoes—mashed, scalloped, or simply oven baked. How such a simple and lowly vegetable can turn into creamy lushness continually amazes me. This dish takes potatoes to a new level and adds layers of flavor that make this Cinderella vegetable shine. There are many variations of this dish in Puglia—some with rice, others without. This is one of the simplest versions, and it is perfect by itself or as an accompaniment to roasted fish or meat.
1. Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C).
2. In an enameled cast-iron pot, pour half the olive oil and spread it around to cover the bottom of the pot. Layer 1/3 of the sliced onions in the bottom of the pot, add a layer of potatoes and a layer of tomatoes, and sprinkle with some breadcrumbs, cheese, salt, and red pepper flakes. Continue layering, finishing with a layer of breadcrumbs, cheese, and red pepper flakes. Drizzle with the remaining olive oil, pour in enough water to come halfway up the layered vegetables, and bake for about 1½ hours, or until the potatoes are soft.
3. Serve drizzled with some Olio Santo (see recipe) for heat and spiciness.
Copyright © 2010 Viktorija Todorovska. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without express written permission from the publisher.