Frank Pinello's aunt shares their family recipe for a potato casserole that embraces the spirit of pizza.
- 1 kg plum tomatoes, seeds removed and roughly chopped
- 2 onions, 1 finely chopped, 1 thinly sliced into rounds
- 3 tbsp + 3 tsp (75 ml) olive oil
- 1 kg (2 lb) Idaho potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced into 5-6 mm (¼ in) thick rounds (see Note)
- dried oregano
- 680 g (1½ lb) provolone cheese, finely diced
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Heat the oven to 200˚C (400°F). In a medium skillet, heat 3 tablespoons of the olive oil over medium-high. Add the diced onion and cook until soft, about 3 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, salt, and pepper and cook until soft but still chunky, 6 minutes. Remove from heat.
Drizzle remaining olive oil in the bottom of a 18 cm x 28 xm (7 in x 11 in) casserole dish. Spread a thin layer of tomato sauce on the bottom, followed by a layer of potatoes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Top with the thinly sliced onions and sprinkle on some oregano and provolone. Continue layering, finishing with a layer of cheese. Drizzle on any remaining tomato sauce. You should have about 3 layers of potatoes.
Cover with aluminum foil and bake for about 1 hour. Uncover and cook until the cheese is melted and golden, 25 minutes longer.
• Instead of Idaho potatoes, you can use other starchy potatoes such as Russet Burbank, Coliban or Dutch cream or any all-purpose potato.