Crispy roast potatoes
( SERVES 4 )
Photo by Tamara West
The perfect roast potato should have a crispy, golden outside and a light, fluffy interior. Use a floury potato such as agria, red rascal, fianna and ilam hardy. I always hand- pick my potatoes to get the perfect size, either small ones about the size of eggs or larger ones that can be cut in half. When serving these potatoes with a roast, I like to cook them in the roasting pan so that the fat from the roast can be used for basting and give them that extra delicious flavour. Once cooked, keep them uncovered (or they will go soggy) in a warm oven until you are ready to eat.
- Gently simmer the potatoes in salted water for 10 minutes. Drain water and allow to cool on a tray.
- Season with salt then either cook in the roasting meat tray (ensure there is plenty of fat in the tray so that the potatoes can be coated with fat, with a spoon, at the start. Cook for 45 minutes or until golden and crisp at 180C, turning the potatoes at least twice.
- To cook the potatoes separately, heat the oven to 180C. In a large frying pan heat 4 Tbsp of rice bran oil, lard or goose fat. When sizzling hot, add the salted potatoes and baste the potatoes by spooning the fat over them. Place in the oven and roast for 45 minutes or until golden and crisp turning them at least twice to help crisp up the outside.
- Drain the potatoes of fat, season again with salt and freshly ground pepper (add some chopped fresh rosemary at this stage if you wish) and place in a pre-warmed serving dish.