I know that most of us eat portions that are larger than the recommended portions and that cookbooks usually follow the latter but sometimes I wonder what the recipe writers were on when they decided how many people a certain recipe fed. Since most recipes are written for “4” servings, I usually halve it and it works out most of the time. Today however, I made the full recipe AND then some and it still left the two of us hungry! It was absolutely delicious but I do not see how it would feed 4 people when it wasn’t even even enough for 2. It was supposed to be a main and we ate it as such but to feed 4 people you’d really need to make about 2.5 to 3 times the recipe.
It wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be either. It does take a little bit of work and some multitasking but it is worth it. It was very tasty, probably because it was loaded with butter and olive oil! Here is what I cooked:
Ham and French Bean Hot-Pot
300 g (10.5 oz) new potatoes
230 g (8 oz) fresh french beans
230 g (8 0z) cooked ham, cubed
4 tbsp butter
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove
2 sage leaves
salt and pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 200°C / 390°F. Peel the potatoes and wash them, then cut them into wedges and slice them. Put them in a pot, then fill it with water to cover and add salt. Cover the pot with a lid and bring the water to the boil. Cook for 5 to 7 minutes.
2. Cut the french beans in half. Strain the potatoes with a slotted spoon. In the same water, boil the french beans. When the beans are cooked to the desired point, drain.
3. Put two tablespoons each of butter and oil, along with the garlic, in a pan on the stove. Saute the garlic, then remove and discard it. Transfer the beans to the pan, letting them cook and absorb the flavors over low heat.
4. In another pan, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and 2 tablespoons of oil with the sage leaves. Add the potatoes and brown over high heat, putting the ham in at the last minute. Season the potatoes and beans to taste.
5. Butter an oven proof glass bowl generously and coat it with bread crumbs. Add the beans and potatoes, placing them in layers, then sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese. Bake for about 20 minutes. Serve hot or warm.
I’d definitely make it again, I’d just make more of it!