Roasting potatoes doesn’t have to be difficult. If you go online there are so many different methods with their particular quirks and unique combinations that can add several steps (and a lot of time) to something that really doesn’t need to be overcomplicated. You can’t really go wrong with a good, simple roast potato – and when you’ve got the rest of the trimmings that come along with a Christmas dinner to contend with you don’t need any additional faff. Below I’ve written some simple guidelines for how a few small steps can really make a big difference to your roasties. I’ve highlighted the essential steps in bold, and left it up to you how far you want to take them.
Before I begin, I would just like to make a note about ingredients. What really makes your roast potatoes stand out isn’t a fancy method or special roasting tin, a lot of it is down to the variety you use and what you cook them in. Some potatoes roast better than others – we all have our strengths and weaknesses and potatoes are no different. We’d always recommend going for one of our ‘golden’ varieties for the Christmas table, these being Yukon Gold (pictured), Mayan Gold or Golden Wonder. However, that isn’t to say that our King Edwards, Desiree or Red Duke of York don’t make beautiful roasties as well. You’re looking for a variety with a fluffy flesh; the drier it is the more flavour it will soak up. In addition to getting the variety right you also need to consider what you are roasting them in. Duck or goose fat are the traditional go to fats that many people swear by for a luxury Christmas roastie. However, there are other options. We recommend trying our cold pressed rapeseed oil for roasting with. Not only is it healthier for you (with less saturated fat than most cooking oils – which can’t be a bad thing at this time of year) but it has a higher smoking point as well. This means that you can crank the heat up to get a really crispy finish. It also lends its beautiful golden colour to the potatoes perfectly helping them to steal the limelight on your Christmas table, as they rightly should. It’s also a perfect vegetarian alternative to the traditional fats. If you haven’t tried it yet you’re in for a treat.
Simple Roast Potatoes
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 40-50 minutes
- Pre-heat the oven to 200°C (180°C fan/Gas Mark 6).
- Peel the potatoes and chop into similar sized chunks – the more edges you have on your pieces of potato the more chance you give them to crisp up.
- Place in a saucepan and just cover with water.
- Bring to the boil over a high heat before simmering over a medium heat for no more than 5 minutes.
- In a roasting tin or oven-proof dish pour enough oil to happily cover the base before putting in the oven to pre-heat.
- Once the potatoes have boiled drain the water away immediately – do not leave to sit in the warm water or they will continue to cook.
- Leave on the side to steam dry.
- If you’re using fresh herbs (I used Rosemary and Thyme for my example) chop them finely.
- Remove the oil from the oven and add your herbs and seasoning. Stir this through the oil and set aside.
- Placing the lid on your saucepan rough up the edges of your potatoes by shaking from side to side, up and down.
- Carefully pour the potatoes into the oil – this may spit so stand back!
- Turn the potatoes in the tin using a spoon to coat evenly with the seasoned oil before returning to the oven.
- Cook for 20 minutes, remove from the oven and turn the potatoes again. Return to the oven for a further 20 minutes. If possible increase the temperature to really crisp up the edges (220°C/200°C fan/Gas Mark 7).
- Once cooked, remove from the oven and allow to cool before serving.
- Happy Christmas 😊