Criques au Caviar

Delicate potato pancakes topped with crème fraîche and domestic caviar..

Criques au Caviar

For the Crème Fraîche

6 oz fresh heavy cream
2 oz cultured buttermilk

Gently heat heavy cream to 105 degrees (use a thermometer), then remove from heat and stir in buttermilk.  Transfer to a glass jar, cover with a napkin and allow to stand at room temperature until thick, about 24-36 hours.  Transfer to the refrigerator and age for 24 hours.  Use within 7-10 days.

For the Criques, (about 6 2-3 inch pancakes, adapted from a recipe by Jacques Pépin)

1 cup Yukon gold or fingerling potatoes
1 large farm-fresh egg
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 spring onion, slivered
1 tablespoon fresh parsley, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon cultured butter
fine sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper

Peel and dice potatoes and transfer to the bowl of a food processor.  Add egg and pulse until smooth.  Stir in baking powder and onion and season to taste with salt and pepper.  Heat butter in a heavy skillet over medium heat until shimmering, then pour batter into 2-3 inch pancakes.  Allow to cook undisturbed until the edges begin to brown and the pancake releases itself from the pan.  Flip and cook until golden brown, then transfer to a wire rack hold in a warm oven until ready to plate.

To serve, dress criques with a bit of smoked salmon or applesauce perhaps, or my favorite, crème fraîche and caviar.