What’s cooking in France? the Savoie region!
Have you ever seen a French car with the bumper sticker ‘In Tartiflette we trust’? Well, if there is a Tartiflette recipe we trust in, it has to be Caro’s fusion Salmon Tartiflette!
Caro is from England but has travelled extensively and used to work as a chef on a charter yacht. She is a food lover and a passionate cook and has been living in the Haute Savoie in France for 10 years already. Caro loves it here and travels around to try the local produce of different regions in France. ‘I love the fact that food is so important to the French and that there are so many festivals throughout the country celebrating French food’, says Caro.
Caro shares her passion for food, her travel experiences and recipes on her blog Taste of Savoie. On her blog you can read about the regional cheeses (and even find recipes per different cheese type), her restaurant reviews per town, and know everything about local festivals. Some of her preferred French towns to visit are Annecy, Les Gets in the Alps and Lyon, the culinary capital of France. ‘Lyon boasts more than 3.500 restaurants, was the home of chef Paul Bocuse and is an amazing city to explore’ says Caro.
What is Tartiflette?
Tartiflette is a French dish from the Haute Savoie using potatoes, lardons and onions, made in the oven and topped with Reblochon cheese. What does Tartiflette mean? The word probably comes from an old language spoken in the region, Arpitan. The word for potato was, tartiflâ. The original name for this dish was a Pela, which is a gratin of potatoes, onions and Reblochon and Pela is the name of the dish it was made in.
When is Tartiflette eaten?
According to Caro the best moment to eat a Tartiflette is after a good morning skiing in the French Alps, but she says she can always find a good reason to eat a Tartiflette. We have to agree with her, since we also love Tartiflette, and we were very happy to try our Caro’s salmon version!
Smoked Salmon Tartiflette Recipe
- 1 kg medium-sized waxy potatoes
- 1 bulb of fennel – sliced finely
- 1 small onion – sliced finely
- Olive oil (or butter)
- 200g lardons of smoked salmon
- 300g fresh spinach leaves – washed
- 200ml crème fraiche (thick cream)
- Sea salt, freshly grated nutmeg (at Let’s Explore we used nutmeg powder) and black pepper
- 1 ripe Reblochon cheese
- 1 glass of Savoie Apremont wine (optional)
- Crusty bread and salad on the side (at Let’s Explore we made a salad with the leftover spinach leaves).
Cooking time: 1h preparation and 30 minutes in the oven.
Preheat your oven to 180 °C.
How to make a tartiflette:
- Peel your potatoes and cook them in water for approximately 15 minutes until soft enough to cut but not too soft. Cool them off in cold water and then cut into slices.
- Sauté the onions and fennel in a bit of olive oil (or unsalted butter) until softened but not coloured, add some salt and pepper to taste and the (grated) nutmeg. Add the wine and allow to reduce. Then add the smoked salmon pieces, followed by the crème fraîche and gently mix together over a low heat for a few minutes.
- Using a large oven dish; there are different ways to create this dish, you could mix all the components (except the Reblochon cheese) together and pour into a dish or create layers by using half the spinach, the potato slices and the smoked salmon mixture. Layering the spinach leaves, potato slices and smoked salmon mixture and finishing with a layer of potato slices.
- Then slice the Reblochon cheese and lay this over the top to cover completely. Cook in the oven for around 25 – 30 minutes until the top is golden brown and bubbling.
- Serve with a fresh green salad and crusty french bread
Where to buy Reblochon cheese?
In France Reblochon is a normal cheese on sale in supermarkets. But if you are not located in France you can check if they have it at your local cheese store. I know my family has found Reblochon cheese in the Netherlands in their local cheese shop.
There are 2 types of Reblochon cheese and they are depicted by either a green or red seal in the skin. The green is the higher quality ‘fermier’ which is matured for longer and the red is standard quality and a little milder.
Is there a substitute for Reblochon cheese if I cannot find it?
Well, of course it is best, and traditional, with Reblochon, but if it is nowhere to be found where you live then you should try a young, creamy fondue cheese. (Brie could work well too).
We have loved this fusion version of Tartiflette. Thank you so much Caro for sharing! Would you like to know more of Caro’s foodie and travel experiences? Then have a look at her blog Taste of Savoie.