Jansson's temptation recipe

By Tom Norrington-Davies

  1. Serves 4 as an accompaniment
  2. Takes 40 minutes to make and 55 minutes to bake
  3. Rating

This dish – originally from Sweden – is incredibly simple, but don’t rush it. It is also fantastic with 50g freshly grated Parmesan, sprinkled over the top before you pop it in the oven. Not quite authentic but tasty.

tried and tested
Jansson's temptation


  1. 30g can anchovy fillets in olive oil
  2. 25g butter
  3. 2 medium onions, very finely sliced
  4. 4 medium, waxy potatoes (about 800g), thinly sliced
  5. 284ml carton double cream, made up to 300ml with milk


  1. 1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/fan180°C/gas 6. Drain the anchovies, reserving their oil. Gently heat half the butter in a saucepan and stir in the anchovy oil as it melts. Add the onions and fry over a low heat until they are very sweet – don’t let them brown. This should take a good 20 minutes. Once cooked, set aside.
  2. 2. Smear a deep, 1.25-litre baking dish with the remaining butter and arrange half of the potatoes in the base. Pour over the onions and arrange 12 anchovies on top. Add the remaining potatoes and half the cream. Season lightly and bake for 30 minutes. Add the remaining cream and bake for another 25 minutes, until golden and the potatoes are very tender. Serve immediately with grilled lamb chops or a good steak.

Nutritional info

Per serving: 584kcals, 44.8g fat (27.4g saturated), 8.6g protein, 39.3g carbs, 5.7g sugar, 1.1g salt

Chef's tip

Fantastic with 50g freshly grated Parmesan sprinkled over the top before you pop it in the oven.

Wine Recommendation

A simple unoaked Soave or Pinot Blanc would work here. Or try an ice-cold schnapps or vodka.


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July 26

This is a very curious version of this beloved Swedish classic. For a more authentic version, much more recognisable to a Swede see: http://marieloua.wordpress.com/2009/06/26/janssons-frestelse/ The proper Swedish original with Swedish ansjovis (pickled sprats - available at Ikea) is unlikely to be served as an accompaniment to lamb which was rarely eaten in Sweden until recently, because they thought it tasted of wool!

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