The lowly potato has been a real budget saver during lean times for my family and friends. Steve, a coworker of mine, determined not to starve before next weeks paycheck, designed the “Thousand Island Tater”. A ten pound sack of potatoes provided substance for several days. Using the condiments the company provided free he made homemade Thousand Island dressing. He carefully mixed foil packets of mayonnaise, ketchup and relish to create the potato topper. He then nuked a couple of potatoes, topped them with dressing and got full cheap.
When my wife was staying home raising our four kids the potato was a regular on the menu. Mila, a Croatian friend of my wife taught her to make “pita”. Flour, water, and oil created dough that was rolled out with a long dowel to a paper thin consistency. It was layered into several half sheet pans and topped with potatoes, onions, garlic and butter. It created a strudel-like pastry than was good warm or cold.
While browsing our cookbook collection my wife rediscovered a recipe from The Ultimate Fat-Free Cookbook published in 1997. I’m guessing the name Concertina Potato comes from fact the finished product looks a bit like concertina wire. A baking potato is sliced every ¼ inch being careful not to go all the way through. Slivers of fresh garlic are placed in between each slice. The original recipe calls for baking without added oil. The wife adapted the recipe to a fatty version by drizzling olive oil on before baking. The finished product tastes a like a cross between a baked potato and augratin potatoes. The photo below shows a bit of butter added. Some other topping suggestions include sour cream with chives, tomato salsa, bacon bits and barbecue sauce. Use them as a side dish for beef or add a salad and make it a meal. If there happens to be any leftovers they make great, garlicky home fries. Chop and sauté with diced onions in oil until brown and crispy. Good food cheap.