Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Roasted Smashed Potatoes

Side dishes can get a little willy nilly if you're not careful. Falling into a rut is the main problem people seem to have, so they serve the same sides with every meal. Then there's the problem of spending as much time on a side dish as you spent on the rest of the meal combined. This isn't a problem if you plan for it, but the "surprise - this is a two-hour task" can be a bit annoying. When I began cooking, I experimented with tons of recipes, and I found that many side dishes took forever to prepare. Worth it occasionally? Yes. Every night? No. So here I give you roasted smashed potatoes, a handy side brought to you by Cooks Illustrated. After I shared the Strawberry Cream Cake that took more time than I care to admit, I'd like to prove that not all Cooks Illustrated recipes are so labor intensive. In fact, some of them are downright simple.

Roasted Smashed Potatoes

2 pounds small Red Bliss potatoes (about 18), scrubbed
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
Kosher salt and ground black pepper

Adjust oven racks to top and bottom positions, and heat oven to 500 degrees.
Arrange potatoes on pan, and pour 3/4 cup of water into the pan. Wrap tightly in aluminum foil, and cook on bottom rack until skewer slips in and out of potatoes easily (poke through foil to test), 25 to 30 minutes. Remove foil and cool 10 minutes. If any water remains in pan, blot dry with a paper towel.

Drizzle 3 tablespoons of oil over potatoes, and roll to coat. Space potatoes evenly in pan, and press firmly, flattening until 1/3 to 1/2 inch thick. Sprinkle with thyme leaves, and season generously with salt and pepper. Drizzle evenly with remaining 3 tablespoons of oil. Roast potatoes on top oven rack 15 minutes; transfer to bottom rack, and continue roasting until well browned, 20 - 30 minutes. Serve immediately.

This is originally from Cook's Illustrated.

The recipe is for 18 potatoes, but I'm cooking for one person, and I don't want to eat these potatoes more than three meals in a row. You mean I don't want two potatoes per dinner nine days running? Shocker. Give the potatoes a good scrub in the large colander from the Colander & Bowl Set, and let them hang out a bit while you do other stuff.

If you've followed by blog for any length of time, you know how I am about prep work. You also know I'm obsessed with Pampered Pantry Salt and Pepper. And the Bamboo Grinder Set. And the Pinch Bowls. I seriously adore all of these products, but let me just say this about high quality salt and pepper: "This recipe is good," vs. "This recipe just changed my life." That's all.

I put the potatoes in the Medium Bar Pan, but I'd use the Large Bar Pan if I was doing a full recipe. Honestly, I think my potatoes are a bit bigger than the recipe wants them to be, but I also think I don't care. They still smashed well, as you'll see later. Look at that beautifully seasoned Stoneware! This means I never have to grease it when I bake brownies, cookies, etc.

After you've baked the potatoes as instructed, give them a smash. That's right - just mess them straight up. The Meat Tenderizer is perfect for this because it's got this flat side for flattening meat and, well, smashing potatoes that have been roasted a while. After they're smashed, you get to drench the potatoes in olive oil and seasonings before sticking them back in the oven to turn golden and crisp.

Is this recipe insanely easy? Yes. Is it cheap? Yes. Is it kind of like something you'd get in a restaurant? Yes. Did I eat more than two of the potatoes with my dinner? Maybe.

Like the products you saw used?
Shop Online 24/7 at
E-mail me: chefjennylyn[at]
Call me up: (205) 585-2464

No comments:

Post a Comment