Recently I worked on a photo shoot that called for “Purple Sweet Potatoes”? Luckily they were not hard to find & luckily there were a few left over from the shoot for me to bring home to Food on Fifth. I also happened to have a couple of “Beauregard” sweet potatoes which are a deep orange-red inside purchased from my CSA, Fresh Harvest.
I love potatoes…any and all potatoes..but I do have a special adoration for the sometimes gnarly locally grown sweet potato in all it’s formations. Never uniform in shape or color, or size…these are the ones I am drawn to.
Mashed together with butter…..a gratin with cream or milk….baked? I recently ran across a reference to a dish I was unfamiliar with….a “Tian”….it seems it can be both a shallow casserole type dish originating in Provence as well as a recipe cooked in this type of dish. I realized I had just purchased a “tian the dish” in which I could bake the “tian recipe”!
The turquoise tian…the purple & deep orange sweet potatoes…stunningly beautiful.
A Sweet Potato Tian
- 2 orange sweet potatoes (yams, etc) mine were “Beauregard’s”
- 2 purple sweet potatoes (Stokes Purple) or any other
- 2 large or 4 small shallots sliced
- 1/4 cup good olive oil
- sea salt & freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 1/2 cup shredded white Cheddar cheese
- 1/2 cup shredded Gruyere cheese
- fresh or dried thyme leaves
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Wash and pat dry the sweet potatoes. Peel using a vegetable peeler and trim ends flat. Slice each into “coins” about 1/4 inch thick.
- Toss sweet potato slices in a large bowl with the olive oil, salt & pepper until well coated.
- In a “tian” (shallow earthenware casserole dish) scatter sliced shallots over the bottom and then alternate the slices of purple and red sweet potatoes..2 red, 2 purple and so on until the dish is filled.
- Scatter thyme leaves over all. Cover dish with a sheet of foil.
- Bake for 20 minutes covered. Uncover & sprinkle Cheddar & Gruyere over the top.
- Return to the oven, raising the temp to 400 degrees. Bake for about 20-30 more minutes until the potatoes are “knife” tender and the cheeses are melted and just a bit bubbly. Serve immediately or set aside and cover loosely with foil for up to 30 minutes.
Notes: This is a great lower calorie and fat dish than the typical “gratin” which usually has milk or cream, and cheeses. Serve as a side dish or with a salad as an entrée.
Recipe by: Teresa Blackburn, Food on Fifth Blog 11/2014 teresablackburnfoodstyling.com
Turquoise Tian Dish – Set of 3 “Anthropologie” online or in store ; Linen Napkin “Restoration Hardware” online; Silver Spoon “Gas Lamp Antique Mall, Nashville”; Brown Speckled Enamel “Nashville Flea Market”