In an effort to eat more meatless meals (for environmental reasons), as well as to always embrace local produce and goods, I arranged a comfortable meal at home using a traditional French dish. Tartiflette may be more easily recognized as a scalloped potato dish. In France Tartiflette is finished with slices of Reblochon, an earthy, yeasty smelling cheese from Haute-Savoie. The semi firm cheese has a natural rind and is suited as a table cheese or melting cheese.
Inspired by this French dish and the local Ontario produce in my kitchen, I went to purchase a few missing ingredients. Instead of Reblochon, I chose to use the Quebec made cheese Oka with similar qualities to Reblochon. And instead of a traditional mondeuse (only a very small amount of of this grape variety is grown in the area of Savoie) or a white Burgundy or Savagnin from the neighbouring wine region of Jura, I chose a local Chardonnay from Niagara.
The meal and pairing were a success! Complete Canadian comfort food. See the recipe and tasting notes below.
8-10 medium sized Ontario white potatoes
1 Ontario cooking onion
1 cup of whipping cream
1 tsp (+) of nutmeg
salt and pepper to taste
4 hand fulls of Ontario green beans
2 tbsp olive oil
1 dollop of butter
cracked sea salt
1. Thinly slice the onion and sauté in olive oil until soft in a large frying pan.
2. Add thinly sliced potatoes. Sauté until for 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat.
3. Evenly distribute half the potato onion mixture in the bottom of a baking dish 20cm x 20cm.
4. Season with salt, pepper and half the nutmeg. Add a few slices of Oka.
5. Layer the remaining potatoes and onions.
6. Season again, pour the cream over and finish with a generous layer of Oka.
7. Bake at 350°F for 30 minutes. Finish under the broiler for a few minutes until the top is golden brown.
8. Let the dish rest while preparing the side.
1. Boil the beans in salted water for one to two minutes.
2. Drain, the beans and return to skillet with melted butter and olive oil.
3. Toss and warm through.
4. Season with sea salt.
Pairing: 2009 Lailey, Canadian Oaked Chardonnay, Niagara On The Lake, ON
Clear light gold colour. Medium expression. Aromas of oak, butter, caramel, Bartlett pears. Highlighted by nuances of babies breath and flint. Bold flavours of spice, lemon rind, melted butter and stone are supported by ample alcohol and acidity. It’s delicious. I’m happy I decanted it to get the most out of this well made wine.