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Recipe: Janssons Temptation

Posted by Bronte Aurell | Food & Recipes, Recipes, Scandi Life

Recipe: JANSSON’S TEMPTATION

An essential on any Swedish Christmas table, the humble Jansson’s Temptation is actually one of the stars. It is one of the most misunderstood dishes outside Sweden because it includes ansjovis, often mistranslated into English as ‘anchovies’. Swedish ansjovis are a sweet, pickled sprat as opposed to the actual anchovies in oil. The most famous brand of sprat used for this is Grebbestads ansjovis original, which we sell in our shop and online. Your local IKEA or Scandi shop may also stock it. If you cannot find this brand, try finely chopped pickled herring instead, rather than oily anchovies. SERVES 4 AS A SIDE
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time50 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Swedish
Keyword: christmas, julbord, smorgasbord, sweden
Servings: 4 people
Author: Bronte Aurell

Ingredients

  • 700 g g/1 lb. 9 oz. floury potatoes such as Russet, King Edward or Maris Piper
  • 25 g g/1 3/4 tablespoons butter
  • 200 g g/7 oz. sliced white onions
  • 125- g g/ 4 1/2-oz. can of ansjovis (see introduction or finely chopped pickled herring
  • 300 ml ml 1 1/4 cups whole milk
  • 300 ml ml 1 1/4 cups double/ heavy cream
  • 3-4 tbsp tablespoons dried breadcrumbs
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F) Gas 4.
  • Peel the potatoes and cut into matchsticks, a little thinner than French fries. Do this in one go and don’t soak them in water as you want to keep the starch. Put the potatoes in an ovenproof dish and place in the preheated oven for around 20 minutes to pre-cook them a bit.
  • Meanwhile, melt the butter in a saucepan and add the sliced onions. Cook over a gentle heat until soft, taking care not to brown them. Remove the potatoes from the oven and add to the onions, mixing gently without breaking them up, and fold together.
  • Place half the potatoes and onion back in the ovenproof dish. Place half the ‘ansjovis’ over the vegetables and season well. Mix the milk and cream together, then pour half the mixture over the vegetables in the dish.
  • Repeat with another layer of the potatoes and ansjovis, pour over the rest of the milk and cream and finish with a scattering of breadcrumbs on top. The cream and milk mixture should reach the top of the dish.
  • Pop back in the oven and bake for around 30–35 minutes or until the potatoes are cooked through. Some potatoes soak up more liquid than others, so you may need to add more milk and cream during cooking – you want the end result to be creamy.
  • This recipe is from our Bronte Aurell’s book The ScandiKitchen – available in all good book stores and on Amazon both in UK, mainland Europe and the US and Canada. Published by Ryland Peters and Small – signed copies in our online store.

Notes

Veggie Variation
Omit the ansjovis and this becomes a lovely vegetarian potato gratin. If you do this, I suggest you add a few drops of white wine vinegar to the milk and cream mixture and adjust the seasoning. If you want a bit of a bite, add some capers or mushrooms.
This recipe is from our Bronte Aurell’s book The ScandiKitchen – available in all good book stores and on Amazon both in UK, mainland Europe and the US and Canada. Published by Ryland Peters and Small – signed copies in our online store.
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