Published January 1, 2006.
Buttery, earthy, and sweet, this French bistro take on skillet potatoes and onions usually requires tons of time--and butter. Could we get away with using less?
Potatoes Lyonnaise uses only four ingredients--butter, onion, potatoes, and parsley--but despite its apparent simplicity, we found that most recipes produced sodden, greasy, heavy potatoes accompanied by waterlogged onions.
This dish should embody classic French bistro cuisine: buttery, browned potato slices interwoven with strands of sweet, caramelized onion and fresh, grassy parsley for a four-ingredient skillet potato dish with complex flavors.
First, we had to choose the right potato. Yukon Golds beat out crumbly, high-starch russets and rubbery, low-starch Red Bliss. We parcooked the potatoes in the microwave so that once added to the skillet, they would cook through in the time they took to brown (without the microwave, the potatoes charred on the outside before cooking through). While the potatoes were in the microwave, we cooked the onions just long enough to release moisture and cook in their own juices. To finish the dish, we united the onions and potatoes in a brief sauté for the perfect melding of flavors.list of recipes