This potato pancake with cheese and bacon, called a truffade in French, is simple to make. Potato slices are fried in lard or olive oil, and Cantal or Gruyere cheese and bacon bits are stirred in. To make a hearty meal of it the Auvergne way, serve it with meaty pork sausages.
If you can’t afford truffles, you indulge in truffade, say the inhabitants of the Auvergne, notoriously among the coldest and most rugged areas of France. Often served with sausages, truffade is a potato cake recipe flavored with bacon and laden with cheese as a buttress against the worst weather. Nippy Cantal is the local hard cheese, although Gruyère may be substituted. Originally published May 9, 2007. –Anne Willan
Potato Cake with Cheese and Bacon
- Quick Glance
- Quick Glance
- 10 M
- 40 M
- Serves 4
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Recipe Testers Reviews
This recipe could be considered something like a classic. It has potatoes, bacon, and cheese—who can beat that combination? It also resembles breakfast—and breakfast for dinner is definitely a fun thing. The extended family was over for dinner and there were no leftovers. The only difficulty I had was that the whole thing stuck to the skillet when I turned it over, and so I quickly turned it back and served it out of the pan. No one complained that it wasn't out of the pan. I think that I could have tried loosening the bottom before trying to flip it out. I also think that I could take everything out of the pan, add more oil to coat and then put everything back in the pan (after mixing in the cheese). This might prevent sticking. I can see making this recipe again, though.
You need to make this if you're floundering for a hearty brunch idea for guests. You also need to make it if you just want a simple, comforting, porky, potato-y dish. The bacon, though not a large amount, really makes its presence known here, as does the added lard. The potatoes are enveloped with the bacon flavor and almost suck it into themselves. We loved how the potatoes became crunchy in places and not in others. We also loved how the cheese filled the nooks and crannies of the cake. The lardons injected flavor here and there and clung to the potatoes and cheese like they would never let go. The bottom of the cake cooked to a glorious dark butterscotch brown. I bet this would taste as good without the cheese, too, though the cheese helps bind the whole thing together. Just between you and me, next time I'm adding some chives or scallions. Also just between you and me, the 2 of us ate the entire thing—without apology and with abandon.