Vegetarian Hachis Parmentier

Potatoes were introduced to France by a French pharmacist named Antoine Parmentier in the late 18th century when France was experiencing post war famine.  This dish is typically made with ground beef but I have made a filling of slowly cooked onions, ground tomato, garlic and beans.  It becomes comfort food at its finest when topped with mashed potatoes.  Vegans could make this dish easily swapping out the milk in the mashed potatoes for vegetable broth and omitting the cheese on top.

Filling:

1 very large Spanish onion, chopped

2 beefsteak tomatoes, ground on a box grater, skins discarded

2 cloves of garlic, minced

2 Tbs. olive oil

3 cups cooked beans of your choosing (I use navy beans)

salt and pepper to taste

 

Mashed potato Topping:

2.5 pounds red boiling potatoes

1 cup of milk, soy milk or vegetable broth

salt and pepper

parmesan cheese

 

In a large saute pan, slowly cook onions in olive oil.  Add garlic to the pan and cook for one minute.  Add grated tomatoes and beans.  Sauté over low to medium heat for 30 minutes, allowing flavors to fuse together.  Pour into a large baking dish.

Boil potatoes until fork tender.  Drain water and mash potatoes in the pan with milk or broth, salt and pepper.  Once smooth, spoon potatoes over the bean filling.  Smooth out the top with the back of a spoon.  Sprinkle a generous amount of freshly grated parmesan cheese over potatoes.  Bake in a 350 degree oven for 30 minutes.

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