I'm going to offer you some words and a recipe, deal?
"I was so quick to judge people, typecasting them by what they ate and how they behaved around food, that I feared becoming what I dreaded most: a self-righteous food snob. And something of a show-off, to go with it. Earlier in the throes of prep, I had suggested to Howie that he chop some onions and peppers into a mirepoix, suspecting that he didn't know the term (just as I hadn't when the journey began). It confirmed every suspicion when he returned a helpless blank stare, and I might have made something more it, thrown him a snooty biscuit or two, until I looked up, over his shoulder, at my reflection in the kitchen mirror, and thought, "Only an asshole would do something like that."'
POTATO GRATIN LANGOUSTINE
3 onions, sliced finely
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 pounds red new potatoes
3 cloves freshly minced garlic
1 tablespoon thyme, minced (I'm sure dried would work fine as well although Spitz might shake a finger at me)
2 cups langoustine or chicken stock
Preheat oven to 325 C.
Make a confit of the onions by sauteing them in the oil until nicely browned. (It is expedient to sprinkle a little sugar over them to make assist the carmalization.)
Peel the potatoes and slice them to a thickness of about 1/8 inch, using a mandoline (or, very carefully with a knife). Season potatoes lightly with salt. Layer potatoes in the bottoms of individual overproof chili bowls, or ramekins. (Come on now, I'm sure a larger oven proof dish will work too if you want to be less prissy, but you'd have to adjust the cooking time.) Place 1 tablespoon of the onion confit in the centre (Clearly, if you are using one large dish, all the confit would be used here), then place a layer of potato slices around the confit, overlapping them as you would for a tart. Sprinkle with garlic and season with salt and thyme. Cover with the stock and bake 30 to 40 minutes, until they are fork-tender and a gentle crust forms on the top.
8 individual servings (or one BIG one!).
Original recipe from The Saucier's Apprentice by Bob Spitz. Photo from Google Images.