The first time I made this dish over ten years ago I knew it was going to be a family favorite - not only is it gorgeous, but nothing beats the crispy browned potatoes sandwiching the succulent soft interior potatoes. The picture above doesn't truly do it justice, as the top two layers had been nibbled off by my youngest when I was out of the house. So much for the perfect photo op, but you get the idea...
The most difficult part of this is peeling and slicing the potatoes, so sometimes I do that in the morning while I'm passively waiting for kids to eat breakfast and make their lunches and then let the sliced potatoes sit under water until I'm ready to assemble.
I make this to accompany a bowl of soup and salad or as a side dish for a protein. In the winter, it's my go-to for a potluck when I know there will be a large contingent of gluten-free folks. I've never come home with even one slice leftover. Oh, and it's perfect for breakfast, again, if there's any left from the night before.
Peel potatoes. Using a mandoline or a very sharp knife and a steady hand, slice each potato about 1/4 inch thick. I use the smallest setting on my mandoline, so it could be even closer to 1/8 inch thick.
Submerge all of the potato slices under cold water right after slicking so they don't oxidize and turn brown. Before layering the potatoes, lightly pat dry. You want to avoid super wet potatoes.
In the bottom of the skillet, pour in 2 Tablespoons of olive oil, making sure oil covers the entire bottom of skillet. Starting in the middle of the pan, slightly overlapping each slice of potato until the layer fans out from the middle to the edge of the pan. Sprinkle a little salt and a scant teaspoon of olive oil.
Continue layering the potatoes in a circular fashion with a sprinkle of salt and a tiny drizzle of olive oil over each completed layer.
When you have reached the last layer, take a piece of tinfoil big enough cover the entire skillet, smear olive oil on top of the foil so that it won't stick to the top of the potatoes (I learned this the hard way, so do make sure that piece of tinfoil has a nice layer of oil on it). Securely tuck tinfoil all around the skillet, and if needed, add another layer of tinfoil if you have any gaps. Press down on the potatoes. And be sure the foil is tightly sealing the skillet, as the tight foil creates a seal so that the layers of potatoes will steam and cook evenly.
Cook in 450 degree oven for 30-35 minutes. Take out, uncover and cook for another 30-35 minutes until you see the top of the potatoes become beautifully browned and crispy. Remove from oven and let cool about five-ten minutes.
Using a spatula, gently go around and underneat the layers of potatoes to loosen. Taking a large plate or cutting board, place over the pan and invert. Voila!