L'il Pomme Anna




Introduction: L'il Pomme Anna

About: Just me.

Are you ready to impress the heck out of your dinner party guests? Stand one of these L'il Pomme Annas on your guests' plates next to a slab of braised short ribs and watch them ooh and coo about how cute — and delicious — they are. It's a very simple deconstruction of that classic casserole potato dish Pomme Anna, but with a single-serve attitude.

A quick note about fat: I'm a fan of any kind of potato that's baked in the oven, but I don't always need my potato side dishes to be flush with fat. Scalloped potatoes contain butter and cream, au gratin potatoes contain butter and cream and cheese, but their less sloppy sister Anna is just butter, salt and pepper, and fresh thyme. And, the amount of butter you use is really up to you. When I make this, I probably only use 4-6 Tbsp. of butter and save the rest. (Herb butter comes in handy!)

Step 1: Get Your Act Together

Your supporting players will be:

6-8 Tbsp. of butter
1 1/2 - 2 lb. Yukon Gold potatoes
Salt and pepper
Fresh thyme
Small clove garlic, minced (optional)
A muffin tin
A baking sheet

A note about substitutions: The French will never forgive you if you don't make this according to my strict interpretation. Nah, not really, but I definitely recommend using small Yukon Gold potatoes. They're the right size. Not as creamy as a Idaho spud, but they'll hold together a bit more, which is important for this dish. But I do very strongly suggest you use fresh thyme. It makes a difference; thyme is a true partner in this recipe.

Step 2: Prep Time

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Melt the butter in a small saucepan and strip a good 2 or even 3 Tbsp. of Thyme into the melted butter. If you've opted for garlic, toss it in there as well.

Slice your potatoes. (You can peel them if you're up for it and want to be a perfectionist.) I sliced them lickety-split using a plastic mandoline that was given to me as a gift. It's crazy cheap, but it works brilliantly. If you don't have one, think seriously about getting one while you painstakingly slice your potatoes as thin as you can by hand (think potato chip thin). If you get desperate, dig up your vegetable peeler and try that.

Toss the sliced potatoes into a bowl, drizzle half the herb butter mixture in, and season generously with coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper. Get down and dirty with your potatoes. Mix thoroughly to coat everything with the herb butter.

Step 3: Power Load

You saved half of the herb butter so you could grease your muffin tin. Do so now. Generously. If you have a non-stick muffin tin, this is an excellent time to use it. You can try this with paper muffin cups if you want (I tried a few and wasn't impressed), but if you're generous with the butter you probably won't have too much trouble with sticking.

Lay a large piece of thyme in the center of each muffin-settin' spot and start layering your potatoes in a roughly circular manner, building up a tower of potato slices that spires a little bit above the fill line. These potato towers will fall a bit as they cook, so give them a little extra height — just make sure they are as tight and compact as possible.

Cover the muffin tin with aluminum foil and pop into the oven. Set a timer for 30 minutes. Might as well clean up the mess you've made while this cooks.

Step 4: Flip and Crank

After 30 minutes, carefully remove the foil. Using a cake spatula or a butter knife and tongs, carefully lift out each Anna, move it over to your baking sheet, and carefully turn it over so that the thyme leaf you initially placed on the bottom is now on the top. If you have leftover herb butter and aren't counting calories, you could drizzle that on these potato stacks at this time. Oh-so-carefully slide the baking sheet back into the oven and crank up the heat to 450 degrees. (Don't cover them this time; you want them to crisp up nice and good.)

Step 5: Plate and Enjoy

After about 15 minutes, your L'il Pomme Annas will probably be ready. You don't want them to burn, but you do want some crispness on the top and sides. Once you remove them from the oven, you can serve them immediately or let them cool. They'll be tasty whether they're hot or cold.

Makes 12 L'il Pomme Annas, but the cook can always claim to hungry guests that sadly, one of them fell on the floor. Which is why there's only 11. Burp.

2 People Made This Project!


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53 Discussions

We just had these for supper. Turned out great! I must confess we didn't have thyme and substituted rosemary but were still great. I used a spoon and a silicon glove to get them out and they all held together just right.

1 reply

Well written instructable. I made these tonight to go with a meatloaf. Your L'il Pomme Anna's were delicious. The recipe made a dozen and my wife and I controlled ourselves and only had two each, plenty of leftovers! It took a little practice to get them out of the muffin tins and flipped over onto the baking sheet. No worries, the ones that fell apart were easy to stack back up, Wonderful combination of crunchy edges with soft potato. There was enough thyme/garlic butter left over for biscuits. Thanks again for a great recipe!

2 replies

Yes, I made them and unlike most cookbooks that I've used they came out looking like your top picture. Excellent photos! Your photography is as good as your cooking.

PURE...EPIC...GENIUS!!! i love how the portion looks plated!!! its awesome and i can only imagine how the combo would look like with a generous portion of meat on the side... now im hungry! hahahaha well made, epic serve, keep up the good work!

3 replies

Thank you! It's really easy to make. Worse case scenario: they all fall apart and you have to eat delicious unstacked potatoes.

What about a chive or green onion fastening-together of these, loosely (I could see like 3 ways that would work)? Or even just toothpicks?

They do look mighty gooood... :9

I guess you could try that, but if you tie them up with green onions, the onion might burn. All of mine came out intact, so I don't think there's too much danger of disaster. The potatoes slices kind of melt together a bit, which seems to bind it all together pretty well.

try putting a sheet pan over the muffin tin and flip it over. The pommes should come right out then you can turn them over with a spatula and fork before baking

try putting a sheet pan over the muffin tin and flip it over. The pommes should come right out then you can turn them over with a spatula and fork before baking

These turned about delicious and beautiful:) I served these with caramelized onions and gouda on top of a filet mignon. Thank you for the wonderful instructable!

1 reply

Oooh, Gouda. Excellent choice. And your little thyme topping came out great, too. Well done.

They were amazing!!! The whole family loved them. Thank you for the great instructions.

1 reply

So glad! Thank you for making them!