Adventurous Simplicity

Over the course of Advent, I’ve not only explored food, but elements of my identity. Part of me enjoys dissecting an element of myself or an idea, but another part enjoys the simpler aspects.

Advent to me is more than a piece of a certain religion’s ideology. It has transcended any singular concept. To me, it’s as much about compassion, understanding and sharing with whoever I can. It’s about bringing a moment of joy to whoever I come in contact with. It could be a smile that only takes a second or a conversation with someone whose day would be brightened by that brief exchange.

I often explore my place in my family’s history. It’s a way to connect to the greater part of me that comprised my past and the past of my family before me. I can also relish the simplicity of a dish that brings the most basic of comforts. Some people have mashed potatoes as a trigger for a comforting family meal. I have rakott krumpli, or a heartier version of a scalloped potato.

Rakott Krumpli (Hungarian Scalloped Potatoes with Sausage and Egg)

6-8 medium August Organics potatoes, sliced into 1cm(1/2″) slices (about 8-10 cups total)

3 Sunshine Organic large eggs

150g/6oz csabai (dry cured, smoked Hungarian sausage), thickly sliced

500mL/2 cups heavy cream

Freshly ground black pepper

Peel and slice the potatoes into 1cm thick slices. Place the potato slices in a large pot. Cover with cold water, bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat to medium. Cook until just tender without starting to crumble and become overly soft. Drain and allow to cool.

Place the eggs in a small pot, cover with cold water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and cook for exactly 15 minutes. Immediately run the eggs under cold water until the hard boiled eggs cool completely. Peel the eggs and cut them into quartered wedges.

Cut the sausage into 1cm slices.

Preheat the oven to 180C/350F.

In a large casserole dish or lasagna pan, layer the potatoes over the bottom of the pan. Add a few slices of sausage and a couple of quartered hard boiled eggs. Repeat with more potato slices, sausage slices and quartered eggs. Finish by slowly pouring the cream over the entire layered potato mixture. Sprinkle liberally with freshly ground black pepper and bake in the preheated oven for 40-50 minutes until the top is deeply golden brown. Serve on its own or as a side with any meat dish. Serves 3-4.

 

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