Dancing Tomatoes

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What’s the best potato for roasting?

Any Potato

Any potato, you might say, but the true best are new potatoes.  As for variety, it’s what your local grower offers. There are more than 4,000 potato varieties and growers are constantly expanding their offering.  The Yukon Gold is universally popular, but there is the cobbler from Maine, the russet from Idaho, the papa cachou….ask your grower the variety if you will, but take the new potato she or he has to offer.

Natural Sugars

New potatoes roast well because they’re filled with natural sugars, and those caramelize and turn to crispness in the pan. I like to roast them with a mix of butter and oil – one encourages golden brown (the butter), the other crispness (oil).  My choice is always olive oil. Shower the potatoes with coarse sea salt, put them in a hot oven, shimmy them around in the pan from time to time and you’ll wind up with crisp and delicious potatoes.  Which should be eaten as soon as you can because they deflate and wrinkle after awhile as the air within them escapes.  So, get your eaters ready…

Tapenade Garnish

I’ve garnished the potatoes here with tapenade, an easy-to-make condiment and the two are sublime together. Please try this!  And then go ahead and make your own delicious combinations.  You will want to grill potatoes this summer, perhaps instead of roasting them. Go to FRENCH GRILL for instructions and ideas!  Again, you will be glad you did.

A Recipe

To make this, go to the recipe for Tapenade and make that. (By the way, you can increase the tapenade recipe many times  if you want to have it on hand for a summer appetizer), then take 2 pounds (1kg) of potatoes, wash them, pat them dry, and cut them in half, lengthwise.  Heat the oven to 450F (220C) and put a roasting pan in there with butter and oil, equal amounts, so the butter melts and both get hot.  Add the potatoes, shimmy them in the pan so their coated with oil, shower them with coarse salt, shimmy some more, and put them in the oven. After 15 minutes, stir them around. Ten more minutes and they are likely to be golden and crisp; check. If they need more time, so be it.

Serve these with grilled meat or fish, a crisp green salad, a platter of crudites.  It makes enough for…2 to 4 to 6. Depends on the appetites!

Bon Appétit, and remember to sign up for LIVE CLASSES WITH SUSAN !


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