Spudtacular (mastering the hasselback)


Hasselback! Surely the best food name ever? These spuds are the bees knees. They’re simple to prepare, super kid friendly and look and taste spectacular. They originated at the Hasselbacken Hotel in Sweden.
The recipe is similar wherever you look. I’ve tried one on taste.com and Nigella‘s, which are drizzled in butter; but I now favour coconut oil*. I also alternate between fresh thyme and rosemary, depending on what’s available. Hasselbacks pair beautifully with pork sausages, roast asparagus and a good plop of sticky caramelised onion jam.
Being a planned-overs addict, I recently roasted double the asparagus and hasselback potatoes; and the following night whipped up a damn fine Potato salad with smoked trout, hard-boiled eggs, olives, asparagus and horseradish dressing. Although quite similar to nicoise, I actually took my inspiration from the Portugese stew, Bacalhau a Gomes de Sá (salt cod with onions, potatoes, olives and egg), which is traditionally served hot; but as we wilted through yet another heatwave in Melbourne recently, a salad was more fitting. I couldn’t lay my hands on cod, so opted for more readily available, and equally delicious, smoked trout.
*If you’ve not cooked with coconut oil, read this and this and you’ll be converted. No more nasty seed or vegetable oils for moi!

Hasselback potatoesBangers with caramelised onions and hasselback potatoes[Recipe 1] Bangers with hasselback potatoes, roasted asparagus and caramelised red onion jam

Ingredients (serves 4 for 2 meals):
12 roasting potatoes (2 kilos/4 lb)
40g (1½ oz) organic coconut oil, melted
1 sprig fresh rosemary, leaves picked (or fresh thyme if unavailable)
Sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper
1 large bunch asparagus, trimmed, brushed lightly with coconut oil
To serve:
Good quality free-range pork sausages
Caramelised red onion jam

Chopstick guide for hasselback potatoesPreheat oven to 200°C (390ºF).
Place a potato on a board and make thin, evenly spaced cuts at 3mm intervals. Place a chopstick or thin-handled wooden spoon either side of the potato, to use as a guide to ensure you don’t cut all the way down through the potato. Gently fan out the slices.
Place prepared potato on a tray lined with baking paper and brush with coconut oil, pushing down between the slices. Repeat with remaining potatoes. Season with salt flakes and pepper. Scatter rosemary over 6 potatoes, for tonight’s meal (planned-over spuds for the salad in Recipe 2 are best left plain).
Bake prepared potatoes in oven for 1 hour or until golden brown and crisp.
Place asparagus spears on a separate small baking tray, and pop in the oven with the potatoes for the last 15 minutes roasting time. Give potatoes another light brush with coconut oil. Remove asparagus and set aside.
Check potatoes are tender. If not, pop them back in the oven for another ten minutes and test again.
♦ Reserve half the hasselback potatoes and half the roasted asparagus spears for the Roast potato salad with smoked trout and horseradish dressing.
Meanwhile pan-fry sausages, and keep warm in the pan, covered, until required.
Serve remaining hasselback potatoes immediately, with bangers, onion jam and roasted asparagus.

  • You could add a simple green salad to this meal, and kids will appreciate steamed corn or carrots on the side.
  • Planned-overs (reserved hasselback potatoes and roasted asparagus) can be stored in the fridge for up to 2 days.

Smoked trout, potato and olive salad

[Recipe 2] Roast potato salad with smoked trout, asparagus and horseradish dressing

Ingredients (serves 4):
6 reserved roasted hasselback potatoes, sliced through, at room temperature
Reserved roasted asparagus spears
150g (5 oz) smoked trout fillet, flaked
3 eggs, hard-boiled, peeled and quartered
Handful olives, pitted (I love Mount Zero Victorian-grown kalamata olives)
Horseradish dressing
2 spring onions, chopped finely
½ cup fresh dill, chopped
Flaked salt (Murray River pink salt flakes are my recent addiction – so good with fish)
Lemon wedges, to serve

Arrange reserved sliced hasselback potatoes and roasted asparagus on a large serving platter, or four individual serving plates.
Place flaked trout, eggs and olives on top; drizzle with horseradish cream and scatter with spring onions and dill.
Sprinkle with flaked salt and serve with lemon wedges on the side.

  • Fussy kid tips: This salad is easy to customise for children by replacing the asparagus with chopped avocado, and omitting the olives and onions, as required. You can also lightly drizzle kid’s serves with good-quality egg mayo or plain light sour cream. Kids may also prefer canned tuna instead of smoked trout; in which case you can use the leftover trout for lunch, in a bagel with cucumber and cream cheese!
  • Any mention of brand names in my recipes is simply because I really like and recommend the products. I don’t do sponsored posts!

52 thoughts on “Spudtacular (mastering the hasselback)

  1. Hi there – I just found your blog thanks to Freshly Pressed and followed straight away: I love using leftovers in creative ways so I am really looking forward to seeing what ideas you come up with! Your pictures are stunning as well. I’m actually researching Swedish food at the moment as part of a self-imposed cookery challenge and had no idea hasselback potatoes originated there… they might have to go on the menu!

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  3. For a second, I thought those potatoes in the reader were bread! They look good for potato lovers, they just probably wouldn’t be my sort of thing. I like chips with ketchup, I’m kind of old fashioned that way.

  4. May I move in, Sas? The idea of being able to pull up to the table at your place and enjoy meals like these – especially that ‘day two’ salad – is just so enticing. Genius.

    • Avocado and hommus could be dolloped between the hasselback slices! You can shove all kinds of treats in those crevices… thin garlic slices, parmesan, salsa, crispy bacon (or fakon!). YUM.

  5. I never would’ve thought of using coconut oil for hasselbacks! Great idea Sas! I do use coconut oil but I’m still a bit picky on the recipes that I use it in. I attempted to cook salmon in it a few weeks ago and Aaron hated it (he said he could taste the coconut but i couldn’t… he obviously has more developed taste buds than me!). Those bangers look absolutely perfect with their little bright crown of relish. Yum. Definitely going to try your hasselback method, it’s been ages since I’ve made them! xx

    • Thanks Laura! You can use refined coconut oil when you don’t want a strong coconut flavour (see my comment below). I use unrefined oil for sweets like raw chocolate energy balls, and also curries and stir-fries, where the coconut flavour is an added bonus.
      I do love a little crown of relish on my snags – the pinkness is courtesy of the red raisins (I’m a bit addicted to them at the moment)!

  6. These meals look superb and so appetising, hard to go past a crispy spud! Intrigued by the use of coconut oil -I once tried it to fry schnitzel and found the taste quite pronounced, not unpleasant but obvious. The health benefits sound compelling though, must give it another try.

    • Thanks so much pinry!
      You can buy refined coconut oil, which has absolutely no coconut flavour or aroma. Just be sure to look for a non-hydrogenated/zero trans fat type. Less-processed/unrefined is the better choice, but you could keep both in the pantry, and use refined where you really don’t want an overall coconutty flavour (like with schnitz)! Frysafe brand is great: refined, certified organic, non-hydrogenated and readily available in Melb health stores.

  7. I cannot wait for the days when I, too, will be saying how much I’m enjoying cooler evenings. Right now, they seem like a pipe dream ..
    This is an excellent two-for-one post, Saskia! Those hasselbecks really do look spectacular. Mom used to make them and, try as I might, I cannot duplicate her recipe. Your roasted potato and trout salad, also, sounds terrific! I never would have thought to use a horseradish dressing with it. Now I can’t stop thinking about it. I just took a trip to your sauces page and pinned it immediately. I’m sure that I’ll be referring to it in the future. Thanks!

    • Hopefully not too long to wait until Spring weather arrives in your part of the world John, and you can start enjoying salads again. Thanks so much for pinning my sauce! My sauces/dips page is getting rather long and unruly! I’m a bit of a sauce and condiment junkie. The horseradish cream is a great dolloper; and lovely and tart (cuts through the richness of the fish and egg perfectly).

  8. Hasselback, yes love the name. So its Swedish then? (my boss is Swedish, its so to impress him). I usually find normal potatoes boring so I will try to make them like this, looks fun and I’m sure they taste great! Your photos are fantastic by the way xx

  9. I was so happy to see your comment in my inbox this morning and I’m even happier to see your post. Just two nights ago I thought about making hasselback potatoes and here’s the recipe and directions. Perfect timing. Super intrigued with your smoked trout salad too. It’s beautifully assembled Saskia. And horseradish dressing sounds lovely with the smoked trout and potatoes. Bookmarked. I’m making both. 🙂

    • Oh thanks so much! Yes, have had a little hiatus. Life has been getting in the way of blogging and blog-reading lately. So glad to be back! Really pleased to hear you might make these recipes – love to hear what you think 🙂

  10. Both of those dishes look fantastic! I love a bit of hasselback potato! And, the salad with the potatoes and asparagus looks awesome. I’m very glad the worst of the heat is behind us…what a ridiculously hot summer we had!

    • Thanks Ali. Good to hear you’re a hasselbacker too! Yeah, so glad to see the end of those stinking hot days. It’s snaking up to 32° next week here, but that’s comparatively cool.

  11. They look so perfect! What impressive knife skills you have. For me, the word “Hasselback” inspires rugged mountains or a dangerous winter sport rather than potatoes, but now I know why they’re called that. I’ve got a bowl of potatoes sitting on my kitchen bench from my food box. They are now destined to be hasselbacked.

    • Hah! Such a fantastically descriptive word isn’t it. We’ve taken to calling them Hasselhofs (they are pretty golden and rather ab-like)! Mine were made from food box spuds too. I’m at the end of my last veggie box now, looking at an enormous daikon and some beets. I think some kind of pickle is calling my name.

  12. Ok I have a confession to make, I have never made or tried Hasselback potatoes.
    I know I am missing out! and I need to change that.
    As for the coconut oil, I have been looking for it all over and it was no where to be found here in Jordan but today my favorite organic food shop announced that they just received some and I can’t wait to go and get some tomorrow 🙂
    I love the salad Saskia, as I love all your creations 🙂 I can’t wait to give it a go

  13. Hasselback potatoes remind me of when my mum went into hospital to have my younger brother, many, many year ago. Dad rarely cooked and these were something my older brother and I ate a lot while mum was in hospital. We loved them! Go dad : ) Also thanks for the coconut oil links, I’ll be having a read x

    • Loove food memories like this. Thanks for sharing Evie. So amazing how a meal can trigger a memory or time so clearly. My dad also rarely cooked, but he was a prawn cracker and fish croquette master; and my sis and I were always thrilled when he cranked up the deep-fryer!

  14. I’d forgotten about Hasselback potatoes until recently when my daughter made them for us, they were glorious!!! Love your salad too. Thank goodness the nights have cooled down, much easier to sleep and the house has a chance to cool down too.

  15. Yum! (And I love the chopstick trick). My 14 year old son is thorougly sick of salads and would think it was heaven if I served up hot potatoes for dinner! Will I be able to find hasselbacks easily and can you suggest a substitute just in case? mx

    • These beauties are definitely teenager-friendly (although I don’t reckon you’d have any leftovers)! ‘Hasselback’ is the cooking method (ie. slicing thinly and fanning out), rather than the potato type. You can use any floury baking spuds eg. Coliban, Desiree, Otway Red, Pontiac, Sebago or my favourite, Dutch Creams.

  16. Saskia,
    I have been converted to coconut oil already, but I’ll read your links to reinforce why it’s a good thing. It really blows my mind to read about how you are melting, while we are all turning a lovely shade of blue here in North America from our record-breaking cold winter. They are saying it’s the coldest winter in 100 years! Your posts are truly an inspiration as I sit here feeling uninspired and repetitive with my cooking these days. There seems to be no shortage of creativity in your kitchen and your photos make me feel like I’m right there. Glad to be on your list for postings!

    • Barb thanks so, so much for the lovely comment. I’m finding it hard to muster up serious time for blogging at the moment, so comments like yours are so encouraging. Sorry to hear you’re still shivering through that unbelievably bitter weather – hope Spring shows its lovely face for you soon!

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