The 2020 health crisis has given us time to think as well as having frightening implications on our lives. In that thinking time we have been reconsidering amongst other things what we eat and how we prepare it. We are trying to reduce our food waste to an absolute minimum, but we are also wanting to eat really great food.
Dauphinoise potatoes is a classic French dish. Smoked mackerel dauphinoise is a very special twist on this classic – and it is so so simple!! You can cook this in a domestic oven and it is very good – in the Big Green Egg it is stunning! For best results I would recommend a waxy potato and we are delighted to have found Linda 1974 – this is an older variety of potato that was originally from Germany and was saved from extinction and re-instated simply because they taste so good!! Other potatoes will of course work, but we got these beauties from the lovely people at Carroll’s Heritage Potatoes. Perfect!!
The dish itself is simple to make but so rewarding to serve! We are just cooking for 2 at the moment and so this dish is based on that. Four or 5 medium sized potatoes, one medium sized onion and a 250g pack of smoked mackerel are the main solid ingredients. The potatoes were peeled and parboiled for around 6-8 minutes and then left to cool so they could be handled. The onion was finely sliced into rings and placed as the first layer in a greased medium sized roasting dish. The potatoes were sliced length ways around half a centimetre thick. These made up the second layer. These layers were each lightly salted. The third layer was the smoked mackerel, skin removed and torn into decent size chunks. This was then repeated until the roasting dish was full and finished off with a layer of potatoes.
The layers were gently pressed down into place to remove any large air spaces between layers. The final step was to add the creamy, mustard milk in which the dish would cook. The mix was made up of around 250ml of milk, 100ml of cream and 2 tablespoons of grain mustard. This was poured into the roasting tin and allowed to flow between the layers. Finally some extra mustard seeds were sprinkled over the top.
This is all there was to it, all that was left to do was to add it to the Big Green Egg set up for indirect cooking at 170-180C (this can also be cooked in a domestic oven at the same temperature!).
Leave this for around an hour until the top browns and the potatoes are beautifully softened.
Once cooked the roasting dish was removed from the BGE and allowed to stand for 5 mins or so which also allows the dish to cool just a little too. Simply plated the layers were served with some chopped chives and freshly ground salt and pepper – it would work really well with a green salad – but we never got that far!!
Footnote: we have also made this with the floury potato Red King Edward 1916 – it is a very interesting variation and worth a try – see here
Smoked Mackerel Dauphinoise Potatoes
A beautifully smoky Dauphinoise potato dish enhanced with smoked mackerel and mustard
- 250g Smoked mackerel
- 400g Waxy potato (we used Linda 1974)
- Medium sized onion 1
- 250ml of milk
- 100ml of cream
- 2 tablespoons of grain mustard
- Salt and pepper
- Mustard seeds (optional)
- Step 1 Peel the potatoes and parboiled for around 6-8 minutes. Cool so can be handled and slice around 5-7mm thick.
- Step 2 Finely slice the onion into rings and placed as the first layer in a greased medium sized roasting dish. Add the potatoes as the second layer lightly salting as you go. Then add the chunks of skinned mackerel. Repeat until the roasting dish is full then top with a layer of potatoes.
- Step 3 Press down the layers to remove any large air spaces.
- Step 4 Mix the milk cream and mustard and and add to the dish to flow between the layers. Finally add some extra mustard seeds over the top.
- Step 5 Put into the Big Green Egg set for indirect cooking at around 170-180C or into a domestic oven. leave until the potatoes are cooked through and the top is a golden brown.
- Step 6 Serve by itself or with a green salad