Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Bacon Hotpot

I first encountered this lovely dish on holiday in Newquay many years ago and had completely forgotten all about it until our recent trip to my old family homeland of Cardiganshire! 

It’s one of those lovely dishes that sits quietly in the oven taking care of itself, after some very basic preparation – and it’s a very frugal dish too.  It really sums up the best of traditional Welsh cooking, like the Italian Cucina Povera.  You can make it with some rashers of bacon, or use up the last ends of a bacon, gammon or ham joint.

 For one person I used :

 1 small onion

4 rashers of back bacon (I used up some cooked ham from the freezer)

2 -3 baby potatoes

Just under 250ml chicken stock

 Melt a knob of butter in an oven-proof pan while you peel and slice the onion, then sauté the onion in the butter for a few minutes.

 Coarsely chop the bacon or ham and add to the cooking onions, then thinly slice the baby potatoes and add three quarters of those to the pan too.  Season and give everything a good stir before pouring over the stock, then top with the remainder of the sliced potatoes.

 Pop into the oven at 190oC (375oF / Gas mark 5) for half an hour, then uncover and cook for another 15 – 20 minutes until the top is crispy and brown and the stock reduced nicely.  If it is too wet for your taste, simply pop back onto the hob and simmer until it reduces again.

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