Monday, 21 June 2010

the perfect roast potato

in which Belleau Kitchen challenges Cocina de Lina to a roast-off! Others may join in at their peril!

So, first let me start by saying that, as far as I am concerned, goose fat is out of the window... I live with The Big V (V stands for both Vegetarian and Viking... depending on my mood) and i'm simply not prepared to make double batches of roasties and anyway my method has never failed to come up with that ideal crispy and golden on the outside and white a fluffy on the inside... yet.

Clearly we cannot taste each others roasties so this challenge is more about discovering other peoples methods for making the perfect roast potatoes... and remember; your idea of perfect may be very different from mine... there are no rules here.

To begin, let's chose a potato... Heston would chose The Maris Piper, Delia would go for Desiree, my mum always goes for something with a red skin.

Today I've found some red-skinned Lincolnshire potatoes.  Rather generic sounding I agree but un-washed and in the paper bag they look like they'll do the trick!

Next, I line my shallow roasting tin with foil and drizzle a thin layer of vegetable oil into it and place it on the top shelf of my hot oven...

(a note on vegetable oil... please try and use a specified oil...rapeseed, sunflower etc... there is a massive worldwide problem with palm oil which is used in almost everything from margarine to soap and you need to make sure of the ingredients in your products... huge swathes of rain-forests are cut down every year for palm oil plantations and they are bad... if it doesn't specify the name of the oil, then don't buy it... palm oil is usually listed as just 'vegetable oil')

Now, fill a large pan with water, chuck in a pinch of salt and bring it to the boil.

Peel and cut the potatoes.  I like large roasties, so, depending on size of the original i usually cut mine into 3rds.

Boil the potatoes until just before soft (really depends on size)... you don't want them to collapse.  My grandma used to time this so that they were just about to fall apart and then lower each one gently into the roasting pan!

Next,  I drain the water from the potatoes but leave them in the pan and add a glugg or two of extra virgin olive oil, plenty of salt and pepper and a handful of fresh rosemary, then I place the lid back on the pan and violently shake the potatoes to fluff up the flesh.

Then, they go into the hot oil in the roasting pan and into a very hot oven until golden and crispy.

Pretty nice roasties... very happy with these today.

So now over to you guys... I guess... make your own, with your own recipe / method and then post a link here...!

eat and of course, enjoy!



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