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Filo’s Gattò di Patate

March 10, 2010

Filo, Carrie’s house mom when she was studying in Florence, makes a delicious Gattò di Patate. She wrote down the recipe in Italian for Carrie, and Carrie translated it for me. It’s interesting to note that Filo, who is from Naples, uses a recipe almost identical to Arthur Schwartz’ recipe in Naples at Table. (This is a great cookbook if you want authentic Neapolitan recipes. It’s out of print, but still available used.) The main difference between the two is that Filo uses 3 whole eggs plus 1 egg yolk, and Arthur uses just 1 egg. Filo also uses a combination of Parmesan and Romano cheeses; Arthur uses just Parmesan. I went with Filo’s version.

I have made Gattò di Patate with salami, but this time I used prosciutto which I think I prefer.

There is one thing puzzling to me about both of the recipes. Both Filo and Arthur say to use a 10-inch round pan, but the quantity of ingredients that they use makes enough to fill two 10-inch pans! The first time I made it I ended up using my largest 10×15 inch Pyrex baking dish and it barely fit. This time I made half of the recipe and it perfectly filled my pie dish.

Arthur states that this is Campania’s most elaborate potato dish and it has become famous outside of the region. Because it is so rich, it is usually served with a simple grilled meat; Arthur suggested roast chicken. I put some chicken thighs in the oven with the Gattò di Patate and made a salad while they were baking.

Here’s my version of half of the recipe. It will easily serve 6 – 8 people. Just double it if you want to make a large pan or two 10-inch round pans. If you double it and want to make Filo’s version, use 3 eggs plus 1 egg white.

Gattò di Patate

(printable recipe)

(Inspired by Filo’s delicious recipe)

Serves 6 – 8

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

1 lb. 10 oz. potatoes

3½ tablespoons butter

2 oz. grated Parmesan cheese

1 oz. grated Romano cheese

2 eggs

2 oz. prosciutto (or salami), cut into small pieces

1 tablespoon minced Italian (flat leaf) parsley

½ teaspoon salt

Pepper

½ cup milk

Butter to grease the pan

Toasted bread crumbs (plain, not seasoned)*

2 oz. provolone cheese, cut into small cubes

3½ oz. mozzarella, cut into small cubes

(Pictured below: prosciutto ready to be cut in small pieces)

Preheat oven to 425˚.

Boil the potatoes and then peel them. (This is Filo’s method; I didn’t want to work with hot potatoes, so I peeled them before boiling them.)

Put the potatoes through a potato ricer. (Both Filo and Arthur use a potato ricer. If you don’t have one, you’ll have to just mash them. Even though Arthur says, “Do not mash.”)

Blend in the butter, parmesan, Romano, eggs, prosciutto or salami, the parsley, salt and a couple of grinds of black pepper. Add the milk and stir it well.

Grease a 10-inch pie plate or cake pan with butter and cover with bread crumbs.

Gently put about half of the potato mixture in the pan, spreading it over the crumbs. Put the provolone and mozzarella over the potatoes (seen left); cover with the rest of the potato mixture.   Smooth the surface, cover with breadcrumbs, add some slices of butter, and put in the oven until the gattò is browned. It takes 30 to 45 minutes.

(I forgot to add the “slices of butter”, which is just as well. It was still delicious. It took 40 minutes in my oven. The photo below shows my gattò ready for the oven. )



Let the gattò rest for 15 minutes; Filo says it will be too hot to eat right out of the oven. She also said it can be eaten cold. (But I wonder if that’s true only for people who also like cold left-over pizza for breakfast.)

Filo noted that some people put a thin layer of béchamel sauce over the mozzarella, but that seems a bit excessive to me.

*It’s easy to make your own bread crumbs if you have a food processor. Just tear some Italian or French bread into small pieces and process. Spread them out on a baking sheet and bake at 350˚ for about 15 minutes, stirring once or twice. Let them cool off. If you don’t have a food processor, you can buy plain unseasoned bread crumbs.
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2 Comments leave one →
  1. Laura permalink
    March 10, 2010 3:41 pm

    This looks. SO GOOD.

  2. March 10, 2010 3:54 pm

    It IS! And I tried it cold this morning, and Filo is right–it is good cold. (I admit I do like cold leftover pizza for breakfast!)

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