|it may not be pretty, but it sho is some kind of good|
Friday night is normally steak night at our house, has been for some time now as a way to reward us for our grueling week at work. The steak varies; on a good week I’ll grill some rib-eyes which is our favorite. Other times it might be the best sale of the week like a T-bone or NY strip, and sometimes I’ll coax and pamper a sirloin or a chuck mock steak and treat it like mignon (or think about one anyway), whatever the budget allows. Heck, I’ve even grilled hamburger steaks and ladled on fancy sauces. I don’t let much get in the way of steak night.
Sometimes, when I find myself ‘downgrading’ on the steak, I’ll make a better side dish other than our normal twice baked potatoes. I have made umpteen variations of potato gratins, each with a different spin. To us, ya gotta have a potato dish with steak. Now, this folks is one heck of a different spin, almost bringing a summer feel to the nippy cold night we had last steak night. You might have made this before; I have made it trying different ingredients several ways but this time I wrote it down and I think I got this gratin just the way I like it best. Down here we also call it pie. Try it and let me know.
Tomato Potato Bacon Gratin
serve 4 to 6
2 thick slices bacon, diced
2 large shallots, thinly sliced
3 garlic toes, minced
6-8 new red potatoes, cleaned
3 tablespoons butter, divided
1/4 cup dry white wine
4-6 Creole or Campari tomatoes
salt and pepper to taste
heavy cream, about 1/2 cup
four cheese shredded blend
Cook bacon in a skillet over medium high heat until crisp. Remove bacon with slotted spoon.Remove all but 1 tablespoon of bacon grease. Toss shallots in skillet and reduce heat to medium low. Cook about 10 minutes until brown and caramelized adding the garlic after the first 5 minutes. Add the wine, increase heat to medium high and cook until there is no liquid. Remove from heat and add 2 tablespoons butter.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Coat a baking dish or large pie plate with oil (or cooking spray).
Slice the potatoes and tomatoes 1/4-inch thick. Arrange tomatoes and potatoes in the baking dish, sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Spoon the caramelized bacon reduction over the top and be sure to evenly dribble the butter sauce too. Pour enough heavy cream in the dish until it comes up half-way of the vegetables. Cover with foil and bake for 40 minutes.
Remove foil, sprinkle lightly with cheese (okay, as much as you want) and top with a thin layer of Panko bread crumbs. Slice the remaining butter in thin slivers and random place on top. Bake uncovered another 15 minutes or until gratin is toasted and brown.