POTATOES AND ONIONS

SOMETIMES THE HUMBLEST OF DISHES ARE THE MOST DIFFICULT TO MAKE.  AFTER A LIFETIME OF COOKING, I FINALLY HAVE A COUPLE OF ROASTED CHICKEN RECIPES WHICH WORK EVERY TIME.  IT TOOK ME A WHILE TO LEARN HOW TO COOK GREEN VEGETABLES SO THEY ARE TENDER BUT ALSO CRISP AND FLAVORFUL.  AND FOR YEARS I'VE EXPERIMENTED WITH METHODS FOR POTATOES AND ONIONS SO THE POTATOES ARE PROPERLY BROWNED AND THE ONIONS NEITHER TOO SOFT NOR BURNED BUT JUST RIGHT.  WELL, THE SOLUTION TURNS OUT TO BE A THREE-STAGE PROCESS -- BACON FIRST, POTATOES NEXT AND ONIONS LAST.  A CAST IRON PAN IS THE IDEAL COOKING VESSEL BOTH FOR COOKING AND SERVING, SINCE IT KEEPS THE POTATOES WARM TILL YOUR GUESTS DEMAND A SECOND HELPING.

 ½ lb SLAB BACON, PANCETTA OR GUANCIALE
 2 lbs SMALL NEW POTATOES OR FINGERLINGS
 1 LARGE RED ONION
 3 SPRIGS OF FRESH THYME
 4 SCALLIONS OR 2 SPRING ONIONS
 FRESH PARSLEY AND CHIVES

1

CUT THE BACON INTO LARDONS, ABOUT AN INCH LONG AND 1/2 INCH WIDE.

IN A CAST IRON PAN, BROWN THE LARDONS ON A LOW FLAME WITH A SPLASH OF OLIVE OIL.

WHEN THEY ARE BROWNED, REMOVE WITH A SLOTTED SPOON AND RESERVE.

MEANWHILE, CUT THE POTATOES INTO 1-INCH CHUNKS. (THEY NEED NOT BE REGULAR.)

ADD THE POTATOES TO THE PAN, SALT AND PEPPER. ADD THE THYME SPRIGS. COOK POTATOES ON A MEDIUM LOW FLAME TURNING QUITE FREQUENTLY FOR 10 TO 15 MINUTES. THEY SHOULD BE NICELY BROWNED ON ALL SIDES. REMOVE TO A BOWL.

MEANWHILE, PEEL THE ONION, SLICE LENGTHWISE IN HALF. SLICE CROSSWISE INTO THIN HALF MOONS. ADD TO THE PAN AND SALT.

COVER THE PAN AND COOK ONIONS ON A LOW FLAME TILL THEY SOFTEN A BIT AND BECOME TRANSLUCENT.

REMOVE THE LID AND CONTINUE TO COOK, STIRRING FREQUENTLY TILL THE ONIONS ARE BROWNED TO YOUR LIKING.

ADD THE POTATOES AND LARDONS. COOK TOGETHER FOR A MINUTE OR TWO TO WARM.

MEANWHILE, PEEL AND SLICE SCALLIONS OR SPRING ONIONS CROSSWISE INTO HALF-INCH ROUNDS. STIR INTO THE POTATOES.

SCATTER CHOPPED PARSLEY AND CHIVES ON TOP AND SERVE.

SERVES 4-6

Ingredients

 ½ lb SLAB BACON, PANCETTA OR GUANCIALE
 2 lbs SMALL NEW POTATOES OR FINGERLINGS
 1 LARGE RED ONION
 3 SPRIGS OF FRESH THYME
 4 SCALLIONS OR 2 SPRING ONIONS
 FRESH PARSLEY AND CHIVES

Directions

1

CUT THE BACON INTO LARDONS, ABOUT AN INCH LONG AND 1/2 INCH WIDE.

IN A CAST IRON PAN, BROWN THE LARDONS ON A LOW FLAME WITH A SPLASH OF OLIVE OIL.

WHEN THEY ARE BROWNED, REMOVE WITH A SLOTTED SPOON AND RESERVE.

MEANWHILE, CUT THE POTATOES INTO 1-INCH CHUNKS. (THEY NEED NOT BE REGULAR.)

ADD THE POTATOES TO THE PAN, SALT AND PEPPER. ADD THE THYME SPRIGS. COOK POTATOES ON A MEDIUM LOW FLAME TURNING QUITE FREQUENTLY FOR 10 TO 15 MINUTES. THEY SHOULD BE NICELY BROWNED ON ALL SIDES. REMOVE TO A BOWL.

MEANWHILE, PEEL THE ONION, SLICE LENGTHWISE IN HALF. SLICE CROSSWISE INTO THIN HALF MOONS. ADD TO THE PAN AND SALT.

COVER THE PAN AND COOK ONIONS ON A LOW FLAME TILL THEY SOFTEN A BIT AND BECOME TRANSLUCENT.

REMOVE THE LID AND CONTINUE TO COOK, STIRRING FREQUENTLY TILL THE ONIONS ARE BROWNED TO YOUR LIKING.

ADD THE POTATOES AND LARDONS. COOK TOGETHER FOR A MINUTE OR TWO TO WARM.

MEANWHILE, PEEL AND SLICE SCALLIONS OR SPRING ONIONS CROSSWISE INTO HALF-INCH ROUNDS. STIR INTO THE POTATOES.

SCATTER CHOPPED PARSLEY AND CHIVES ON TOP AND SERVE.

SERVES 4-6

POTATOES AND ONIONS
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