As I was reading Nigel Slater one evening,,,


One of the many things that I’ve learnt from Nigel Slater is that food photography needs to be quick, because if what you have cooked is really delicious you’ll want to eat as soon as possible. So it happened last night. I was spending an evening alone, cooking for the following day. As I finished my work, I was very aware that I had not thought of my own supper for that night. There wasn’t a lot in the kitchen that hadn’t been spoken for, as we try to shop for ingredients that I have planned to cook over several days. Potatoes and eggs, however, were in abundance together with a large piece of Parmesan that had fortuitously come my way. During the evening’s cooking, in quiet moments, I had been sipping a glass whilst  flipping through the pages of “Tender” – the one about vegetables – and  I remembered seeing a recipe called “A thin cake of potatoes of Parmesan”. It is, I can assure you, absolutely wonderful, which is no surprise, considering its provenance. I added an egg, as I had some.


“A thin cake of potatoes and parmesan” by Nigel Slater…from Tender Volume 1. It’s nearly word for word, but buy the’s an essential

Waxy potatoes, butter, garlic, and parmesan…..the book suggests amounts for 4 people. Just use the amount you need.

Peel the potatoes and slice them thinly, ideally on a mandolin.
Melt the butter in a small pan. Peel the garlic and slice or crush it, according to your preference.
Pour a little of the melted butter over the base of a shallow baking dish or a cast iron frying pan, and cover it with a layer of thin potato slices, overlapping them slightly.Pour on a little more butter and season with salt, garlic, black pepper and a good dusting of grated Parmesan. Proceed with layers of potatoes and seasoning until you have used all the potatoes. Finish with butter and a light dusting of Parmesan.
Bake in the oven at 220C, pressing the cake down very firmly with a fish slice every now and then. After about 45-50 minutes you should have a deep golden potato cake sizzling around its edges.

About Food,Photography & France

Photographer and film maker living in France. After a long career in London, my wife and I have settled in the Vendee, where we run residential digital photography courses with a strong gastronomic flavour.
This entry was posted in 2013, Art photography, Baking, Cheese, Cookery Writers, Digital photography, Eggs, Excellence, food, Food and Photography, Food photographer, Fried eggs, new potatoes, Nigel Slater, Parmesan, potato cake w parmesan, Recipes, Vegetables, Writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

56 Responses to As I was reading Nigel Slater one evening,,,

  1. Envious. This kind of potato pancake never turns out right for me 😦

  2. How serendipitous! A few days ago, a friend and I were discussing some of the lunches we used to have when we both worked in Midtown Manhattan, back in the 70s, when Fridays were still a day of abstaining from meat for Catholics. We would meet at a famous place called Manganaro’s Hero Boy on 9th Avenue and 36th St. If it were a day other than a Friday we would either order a Sausage & Peppers or a Chicken Parmigiana hero and devour them with relish. But if it were a Friday, and we had to “sacrifice” we would order Potatoes and Eggs heros. It must have weighed about two pounds, delicious potatoes sliced thin and fried in butter, mixed it with eggs and served on fantastic crusty Italian Bread, what a sacrifice!

  3. cecilia says:

    As you know I am a great fan of the spud! This simple recipe sounds like me for sure. I shall go out and dig about in the potato patch and give it a try, it would be glorious with a really good parmesan.(which I do not have sadly, but there is a piece of one that will DO) . I will look for the book, have a lovely week Roger.. c

  4. Perfect. It’s high end comfort food. 🙂

  5. saucygander says:

    That looks so good, I wouldn’t even stop for photos.

  6. margaret21 says:

    Yum. It looks as reliably delicious as all Nigel’s recipes. And my aim for the coming year is to produce some half-way decent food photos. It’s not easy….. though you make it seem so.

  7. Perfect for the potatoes we will be getting in our farm share. The egg an inspired addition. (I think you and MTM have the same pans.)

  8. argone says:

    Oh my God these potatoes …. i can imagine the texture … thin and crunchy … gorgeous !

  9. John Harvey says:

    Delicious. The photograph and description mean that I can so almost taste it. I will cook this!

  10. Mad Dog says:

    That looks delicious! I think reading Nigel slater is the right thing to do – IMHO he’s not really suited to TV. Great writing though 😉

  11. Fantastic! Thanks for reminding me, that is absolutely my kind of food and I have not prepared anything like it in quite some time.

  12. Michelle says:

    I used to make Potatoes Anna all the time. It was a lovely thing to make when we were young and poor. One large Idaho potato (almost always in the larder) sliced thin and cooked in a small pan with butter would serve two as a delicious side. I’m sure the Parmesan is a wonderful addition.

  13. Janet Rörschåch says:

    Roger, YES, YES, YES! I am so with you on the photograph quick. Food can be rather dull once it cools down. Too easy to fluff about, setting up the shot. Also, I just smiled seeing you refer to Nigel. He is BRILLIANT! His new books are hitting the shelves on Tuesday. I will have to refrain myself from buying them immediately.

  14. Eha says:

    I eat more rice than most Asians but have to admit you achieved absolute perfection with your potatoes. Methinks there may be variaitons on the theme: I too remember making Potatoes Anna way back but didn’t one have to add a tad cream to that [probably my bad memory!] . . . and you definitely needed the egg if already for the artistry 🙂 !

  15. That looks like a great dinner Roger 🙂

  16. Butter and butter and butter…. with potatoes it is a perfect food marriage. Simple dinners like that are like soul food!!!

  17. OK, that’s it. I can’t stare at those pictures any longer. I need some lunch.

  18. Fig & Quince says:

    The photograph reduces me to the following commentary: yum yum yum YUM YUM YUM! I would LOVE to be eating this right now

  19. Those potatoes! Oh, those potatoes…

  20. Carole says:

    Oh, they have the best potatoes in France. This looks divine.

  21. Life withotu potatoes wold be miserable…and dishes like this are the top end of the potato specturm! Love the book, love the shot but now I want to make that dish…supper tonight methinks.

  22. Oh, delicious. I’m going to try this over the next few days!

  23. mrsgillies says:

    I just ate dinner yet my mouth is watering from your pictures! Potatoes are my favourite food and Parmesan one of my favourite cheeses. YUM!

  24. Oh my goodness. I’m walking away from the laptop and headed to the kitchen right now to make this. So simple, comforting and the ingredients are always on hand. I need my own copy of Tender. Such a beautiful book. I checked it out at the library a few months ago and ended up paying a late fee upon returning it. It’s 9:30am, think sipping a glass at this hour is acceptable? You certainly set up the perfect scene…I want to recreate it!

  25. Karen says:

    Oh those little potato rounds are talking to me. I hope you got to eat this delicious meal while it was hot and crispy.

  26. Pingback: “Roger Made Me Do It…” | christian harkness – photo blog

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