Hasselbackspotatis is the Swedish way of roasting potatoes. Its name comes from the Hasselbacken Restaurant, now attached to a hotel in central Stockholm.
Hasselbacken was first established in the 1700s as a tavern and was originally just a traditional red hut in the midst of a hazel thicket, which is how it got its name.
Restaurang Hasselbacken opened in 1853 in a grand new building. It developed a reputation for grandiose celebrations, which were enjoyed by Stockholm's rich upperclass.
Hasselbackspotatis were first served in the 1940s or 1950s and were an instant hit because not only do they taste really good, but they also look so stylish.
Since they first appeared in Sweden they have become popular all over the world. They go especially well with roast meats or poultry. John Duxbury
• Try using some grated hard cheese, such as Parmesan or Västerbottensost, instead of some or all of the breadcrumbs. This is also very popular in Sweden, but I think originally only breadcrumbs were used.
• Maincrop potates are normally used, but they are also nice made with new potatoes, in which case Charlotte is a good choices as they are oval and waxy.
• Use good quality shop-bought dried white breadcrumbs or make your own by removing the crusts from a couple of slices of stale white bread and giving them a few whizzes in a food processor.
• Turn it into a lovely light lunch by using a large potato and adding grated cheese along with the breadcrumbs. Top with diced fried bacon, some sour cream and chopped parsley. Swedelicious!
|8-12||medium sized oval-shaped potatoes*|
|2 tbsp||melted butter|
|ground white pepper, optional|
|3 tbsp||grated breadcrumbs|
*Virtually any roasting potato will do. I usually use Maris Piper or King Edward.
1. Preheat the oven to 220°C (425°F, gas 7, fan 180°C).
2. Peel the potatoes and place in a bowl of cold water to prevent browning.
3. Place a potato in a large wooden spoon. Using a sharp knife make slices widthways across the potato about 5 mm (¼”) apart (some people making them even closer), making sure to cut down to the lip of the spoon but not all way through the potato. Return the potato to the bowl of water. Repeat with the remaining potatoes.
4. Brush the bottom of a shallow roasting tray with the melted butter.
5. Dry the potatoes and place them cut side up in a roasting tin. Drizzle with half of the butter then season with salt and pepper.
6. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and drizzle with the remaining butter. Sprinkle with breadcrumbs and season with a little more salt. Return to the oven and bake for another 25 to 35 minutes, or until nicely browned. (They may need basting with the melted butter a couple more times.)
If you are cooking them with a joint of meat at a lower temperature then increase the cooking time. They will be a little crispier, but still nice.
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