Perfect Roast Potatoes – for busy mums
- 1.5kilos of potatoes,
- 80g duck fat, goose fat, olive oil or rapeseed oil
- 2 fat garlic cloves finally chopped (optional)
- 2 sprigs of rosemary (optional)
Well you can buy frozen roast potatoes in the freezer isle in the supermarket, but to be honest nothing really beats a good home roasted, roast potato.
So here are a few tips to help make sure your roast potatoes are crunchy and tasty. (Because as I have found to my cost it is sometimes the little things with roast potatoes, which makes them less than perfect).
Try to use floury potatoes like cara, king edward or maris piper. Ideally peeled – but if the skins are OK and if you are in a rush give them a bit of scrub and roast with skins on. (I always do this when I am roasting newish potatoes).
Allow two medium-sized potatoes per adult, which probably equates to about 1.5k to serve six people.
Make sure you cut the potatoes into reasonable side chunks. Too big and they will take a lot longer to cook and too small then they are more like chips.
Preheat the oven to 200c/gas 6 and put a large roasting dish in the oven to warm.
Meanwhile put a pan of water on to boil, adding a good sprinkling of salt along with the potatoes. Bring the potatoes to the boil and parboil the potatoes for about 7 minutes. Drain in a colander and leave to steam for 5-10 minutes so they lose some moisture.
Put the oil or fat in to the roasting tin to warm. I like to use virgin olive oil – but I have used goose fat and this is also very good. From memory I believe Jaime Oliver rated butter. But whatever fat or oil you use make sure you can cook with it and it does not contain any trans-fats which are unhealthy.
At the same time try adding some chopped garlic and rosemary sprigs to the oil or fat. This is optional – but makes roasties very tasty.
Roughen the edges of the potatoes either by shaking them in the colander or scraping the top of each one with a fork.
If you really want to go to town with crispy roasties you can put a sprinkling of semolina on the potatoes before you tip them into the roasting pan.
Add the potatoes to the roasting tin. The potatoes should sizzle as they are placed in the tin. This tells you that the fat/oil is hot enough.
Turn each potato over carefully amd baste with the oil or melted fat.
And then, this is very important, make sure the potatoes are not too close to each other, as the potatoes need space and the air to circulate between them to brown.
Return to the oven and roast for about 45 minutes or until crisp and golden.
Drain the potatoes on kitchen paper – check the seasoning and add salt and black pepper to taste if required. Yummy I promise you.