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Creamy Potato and Butternut Cake

Posted on January 24, 2012 by in vegetables

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When I took this Creamy Potato and Butternut Cake from the oven I had this huge happy smile on my face. I love how a meal sometimes just comes together, not quite how you planned it, but better and a whole lot tastier. I knew what I wanted, a layered potato and butternut cake, but could not find a recipe on the net, so embarked on making my own version. I had a little kitchen elf helping and maybe that was the secret….
Humans, they are the strangest creatures… our case actually quite amusing. We are now on day 23 without any meat. We are not vegetarians, but we are just abstaining for a while. We do eggs and cheese, but no meat or chicken or fish which is a good thing right? The funny thing is that now  when I develop recipes and try out new things, my point of departure is almost always to make a “meaty” dish, in other words a dish with bold savory flavors. This is the reason why I had this big grin on my face, this vegetable cake was a beauty, it had guts and could hold its own next to any slice of cottage pie or lasagna on a plate.
I have no idea how long this no-meat phase is going to last, but what I do know is that this is forcing me to think outside the box, the box of meat that is and I love creating all these new recipes, but you knew that already, didn’t you?

Creamy Potato and Butternut Cake
makes one big cake, serving about 6 people

1,8 – 2 kg potatoes
1 small butternut
250 cream – half for the layers and half for the topping
250 ml grated Parmesan
a nugget of nutmeg
about 100gr butter

Preheat oven to 180C. Wash the potatoes, but leave the skins on.Use a mandolin or very sharp knife and cut the potatoes and butternut in very thin slices, like you would do for a potato bake. The mandolin works better, because you want the slices to be really thin. Do all this over or in a bowl of water so that all the starch can rinse off the potatoes.

When you are done, dry the vegetable slices in a salad spinner or a dry cloth and begin layering your cake. Use a spring form pan otherwise it will be hard to get the cake from the pan. Alternatively use a pie dish and just make a pie. Butter the pan or spray with non-stick spray. Pack a layer of potatoes in the bottom of the pan, making sure the potatoes overlap with each other. Sprinkle with a tiny bit of salt, a grinding of nutmeg and some black pepper. do another two layers of potatoes the same way and then do a layer of butternut. Every third layer or so, drizzle some of your cream over the vegetables, I’d say about 1 tablespoon. Repeat the layer until the pan is full. Halfway though use your hands and compress the vegetables.When the pan is full and you are sure that there is no more space, cover the cake with foil and place in oven. In fact I place some foil over the bottom of the pan too, just in case some of the cream leaks out. Place a heavy oven proof plate or some river stones on the foil to compress the cake while it bakes. Bake for about an hour, test with a knife and bake more if necessary. Once the vegetables are cooked, beat the remaining cream and mix with the grated Parmesan. Spoon over the top of the cake and bake for another 10 minutes to form a gratin topping. Remove from the oven, rest for a few minutes and remove the spring form pan if you used one. Serve slices of this with some rustic onion rings and a salad of baby spinach and a light vinaigrette.

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4 Responses to “Creamy Potato and Butternut Cake”

  1. bellini 24 January 2012 at 1:18 pm #

    Love the gorgeous layers Nina. Don't you just love when an idea comes together and your meal looks as good as it tastes.

  2. Pia 24 January 2012 at 6:11 pm #

    My my that looks delicious – I can't wait to try it! I have also recently stopped eating meat… for now … and it's quite a challenge when, like you say, your focus has always been meat dish first, veggies second. So glad you'll be experimenting with veg dishes, because I'll be very happily trying out your results!

  3. greta 21 February 2015 at 5:55 pm #

    Wonderful.I do that with a layer of cheesy polenta inbetween…been a vegetarian for 40 years!


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