Last Updated on 11/01/2022 by richard
Perfect golden crispy roast potatoes with a crunchy shell and soft fluffy insides.
No roast dinner is complete without decent roast potatoes. When we have the family round for Sunday lunch, for instance, or a festive event there are never any leftovers. Clean plates all around.
For anyone wanting seconds, a couple of the roasted gems, with a splash of gravy rounds off the main course.
Using the right variety of potatoes makes a huge difference. In December the best varieties for your Christmas dinner roasties are Maris Piper or Rooster.
For more info on choosing the best variety for your golden crispy roast potatoes look here.
Oil or Fat?
Having chosen your perfect potato, should you roast them in olive oil, duck or goose fat, or beef dripping? Well, the answer to that question is both a matter of flavour and the temperature of the oven.
- Firstly flavour. Any animal fats such as duck or goose will flavour the potatoes. Most oils will also infuse their unique flavour, except for neutral oils like rapeseed. It’s really a matter of personal taste.
- Secondly, but most importantly is the oven temperature or more specifically smoke point. All oils and fats have a temperature at which they burn. If your oil burns then so will the potatoes.
Expensive oils like extra virgin olive oil with their subtle flavours are best for dipping or drizzling, not cooking.
Smoke Points 🔥
If the temperature of your oven is above the smoke point of the oil or fat then it will burn.
Duck and goose fats have a low smoke point so best used when roasting at 180-190℃ or below. Coincidentally, the ideal range for chicken and turkey.
For 200℃ or above, a high smoke point oil like rapeseed gives really crispy potatoes, but no flavouring, as it is neutral.
Table of Smoke Points
|Extra Virgin Olive Oil||320℉/160℃|
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Golden roast potatoes
- 1.2 kg potato Maris Piper
- 7 tbsp Olive oil
- 1 tsp Sea salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 6 sprigs Fresh thyme
- 6 sprigs Rosemary
- 6 cloves Garlic unpeeled
- Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/gas mark 4.
- Peel the potatoes and chop into 5cm pieces. Rinse well to remove the starch.
- Place in a pan and cover with cold salted (5g of salt per litre) water. Bring to a simmer without boiling hard and simmer gently for 12 minutes until cooked through and crumbling at the edges. Stir the pan gently a few times while cooking.
- Drain the potatoes in a colander, lay them in a single layer on a tray and allow to steam dry.
- Pour 2-3 tbsp of the olive oil into a roasting tin. Sprinkle on a large pinch of sea salt. Arrange the potatoes in the tin in a single layer.
- Lay the garlic cloves on a board and bash gently with the flat of a knife, just enough to split the clove. Tuck the cloves in between the potatoes. Trickle over another 4 tbsps of olive oil and another pinch of salt.
- Roast in the oven for 30 minutes.
- Take the tin out and turn the potatoes. Baste them with the oil in the tin adding more if needed. If any of the garlic cloves are blackened, remove them. Return to the oven for a further 20-30 minutes.
- 10 minutes before the end tuck in the sprigs of rosemary and thyme.
- Remove from the roasting tin and serve with a sprinkling of black pepper and fresh thyme.
Try one of these recipes from my cookbook …
Grandads Cookbook may reference or include sections of text and images reproduced courtesy of:
- Nicky Corbishley – Kitchen Sanctuary
- Heston Bluementhal