Jansen's Temptation

April Bloomfield

The Breslin, The John Dory Oyster Bar, Salvation Burger, Salvation Taco, The Spotted Pig, and White Gold, NYC

Jansen's Temptation (sometimes spelled Jansson's Temptation) is a traditional Swedish gratin, often included in a smorgasbord. April Bloomfield of the Spotted Pig first cooked this dish in London. "I was absolutely blown away,” she says of the first time she had it. “It's the perfect combination of potatoes, sweet onions, and salty anchovies."


  • 2 cups cream
  • 3 cloves garlic, root and germ removed, quartered
  • 2 tablespoons thyme, plus a little extra for garnish
  • 1 3/4 ounces anchovy fillets, plus 4 extra for garnish
  • 2/3 teaspoon ground fennel
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 2 peeled onions, sliced thinly
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 to 6 Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into sixths
  • Bread crumbs, as needed


Preheat oven to 325ºF. To prepare cream base, bring cream, garlic, thyme, anchovies, and fennel to a boil. Remove from heat and let ingredients infuse for 10 minutes. Once cooled, purée in blender until smooth.

In a medium sauté pan add 2 tablespoons of the butter. Add the onions and cook over medium heat until tender, about 10 minutes. Add the salt and remaining butter and continue cooking until the onions are very soft, but not brown, about 4 minutes.

Remove from heat and reserve until assembly. Place the potatoes in a large pot and cover with cold water. Heavily season water with salt and bring to a boil. Cook potatoes until very tender (there should be no resistance when pierced with a knife), about 15 to 20 minutes, depending on the size of the potatoes. Strain and set aside.

Assemble the dish by placing a layer of cooked potatoes wedges in the bottom of a 9-inch gratin dish. Follow with a layer of about half the onions. Top with the remaining potato wedges and finally, the remaining onions. Pour cream over the layers until dish is full, and almost overflowing.

To garnish, sprinkle with breadcrumbs and fresh thyme. Top with 4 anchovy fillets and bake for 20 minutes. Allow to rest a minute or two, but serve hot.


4 servings