This dish came together as pure genius. My partner talked about it as a shrove Tuesday dinner, using up all the deliciousness in the fridge. It was a bit like that. I had a couple of different types of cheese, some ratatouille and the chicken breasts. I think this combination of flavours works perfectly together and is just a little bit sinful, not too much, just a little bit. The ratatouille is so delicious with cheese, a little creaminess to cut through the sweet vegetables and the two pair beautifully with the super lean chicken marinated with lovely herbs. I had about five different types of cheese in the fridge. We decided the right combination would be the feta (a goat/sheep variety), soft washed rind (Red Square hailing from Tasmania), and aged cheddar (this was a toss-up with the parmesan, but I also think gruyere would have worked a treat). You can use whatever you have, but think about the balance of flavours and saltiness.
Three cheese potato gratin
|1||tablespoon||crumbled feta cheese|
|1||tablespoon||soft washed ring cheese, chopped into small pieces|
|grams||aged cheddar cheese|
Preheat the oven to 180oC. Wash your potatoes. Using the single blade on a vegetable grater, slice the potatoes into very thin circles. Take two small circular ramekins (teacups would work) and arrange the potato slices alternating the feta and washed rind cheese between each layer. Pour a tablespoon of milk into each cup (to prevent the potato drying out in cooking) and grate the cheddar over the top. Bake for 40 minutes. Remove from the ramekin for serving.
Smash the peppercorns in a mortar and pestle. Squash the garlic clove (leaving the skin on). Break the bay leave into about 4 pieces. Combine all the ingredients in a bowl. Mix to coat the chicken well. Leave to marinade in the fridge for at least one hour, but the longer the better. Brush the bay leaves and peppercorns off the chicken. Heat an oven proof frying pan on high heat. When the pan is hot, place the chicken in the pan skin side down and cook till the skin is golden and crisp. Take the pan off the heat, turn the chicken so it’s skin side up and bake at 180oC for 10 minutes or until cooked through. Serve with warm ratatouille and three cheese potato gratin.