Melissa d’Arabian’s Potato-Bacon Torte

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  • prep 25 min    cook 55 min
  • serves 6-8
Melissa d’Arabian’s Potato-Bacon Torte

Melissa d’Arabian’s Favorite Holiday Recipe
“This potato torte has become a staple at our annual Mother-Daughter Holiday Tea. It is easy to make ahead (you can even freeze it whole, already baked), and it can be served warm or room temperature. I always make a few … at least one without the bacon — I like to have some hearty meatless dishes at my parties for any vegetarian guests. The homemade crust is so flaky and tasty, and the potato gratin inside is perfect winter party fare. (And, a whole torte costs just a few dollars to make!)”


  • 4 strips bacon
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 6 leaves fresh sage
  • 2/3 cup heavy cream
  • 2 Pie Crusts, recipe follows
  • 3 medium baking potatoes, peeled
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup grated Gruyere cheese
  • 1 egg yolk, whisked with a splash of water

    How to make it  1 hour, 20 minutes

  • 1

    Preheat the oven to 375°F.

  • 2

    In a skillet over medium heat, cook the bacon until just crispy. Drain on paper towel lined plate and set aside. Crumble the bacon when cool to the touch.

  • 3

    Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, heat the rosemary, sage, and cream over low heat to a bare simmer. Turn off the heat and let steep for about 5 minutes. Remove the herbs.

  • 4

    Remove the pie pan from the refrigerator. Slice the potatoes in half lengthwise and then finely slice the potatoes. Working in circles, arrange the potato slices in the pie crust, stopping to season each layer with salt, pepper, and about 1/4 of the crumbled bacon. Continue layering until the pie pan is nearly full. Top with an even layer of the cheese and gently pour cream around and over the entire pie, allowing it to seep down between the potato slices. (You may not use all the cream.)

  • 5

    Roll out the remaining disk of refrigerated dough. Cover the pie with the dough and crimp the edges closed. Brush the top and edges of the crust with egg wash. Make a few slits in the center of the top crust, for the steam to escape, and put the pie pan on a baking sheet. Bake the torte until the crust is browned and crispy and the potatoes are cooked through, about 50 to 60 minutes. If the crust edges get too brown, cover them with some strips of aluminum foil. Remove the pie from the oven and let rest at least 15 minutes before cutting into wedges and serving.

Pie Crust

  • 1 cup butter (2 sticks), cubed and chilled
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 8 to 10 tablespoons ice water

    How to make it 

  • 1

    Put the butter, flour, and salt in the food processor, and pulse lightly just until the mixture resembles wet sand. Add the water, 1 tablespoon at a time, pulsing briefly after each spoonful of water. Keep adding water until the dough just begins to gather into larger clumps. Transfer equal amounts of the dough into 2 resealable plastic bags and pat each into a disk. Let rest in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. Remove 1 of the disks from the bag to a flour coated surface. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough out to a 10-inch round. Gently fit the rolled dough into a 9-inch pie pan, and refrigerate while you prepare the torte ingredients. Yield: 2 (9-inch) pie crusts.

Melissa d’Arabian is the host of Food Network‘s Ten Dollar Dinners airing Sundays at 12:30pm ET/PT. New season begins January 2010.

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