Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Classic Roasted Red Potatoes – Overlooked and Essential

This roasted red potatoes recipe is one of those food wishes that seems so basic I tend to pass it over for the more provocative requests. I’m sure this has been asked for dozens of times, and yet 725 videos in, I still hadn't posted this iconic side dish. Well, that madness ends today.

While I may take this procedure for granted, it really is a technique that should be mastered by all home cooks. There are three key elements necessary to achieve roasted red potato nirvana. You need a heavy, shallow roasting pan or baking dish, lots of olive oil, and the most precious ingredient of all…time.

I use a Le Creuset, which is glazed cast iron, but any heavy-duty pan should work. No need for expensive extra virgin olive oil for this; just choose whatever you’d use to sauté onions and peppers for Italian sausage, which, coincidentally, would pair awesomely with roasted red potatoes. As for the relatively long cooking time, we make no apologies.

These are technically overcooked, but that’s what it takes to get that perfect marriage of crispy-crusty outside and creamy-soft inside. The only real way to lose at this is to undercook the potatoes. This is considered a crime against nature, and will not be tolerated.

I served mine next to some grilled bass, which was topped with a very garlicky sauce, so I didn’t add any to my potatoes. If you do want some garlic flavor, add some crushed cloves to hot olive oil, and let it sit for an hour. Then strain and use olive oil as shown.

Anyway, I'm sorry I didn’t post this great recipe sooner, and I’ll be sure to pay more attention to these types of requests. This is the kind of beautifully humble dish that makes any meal better, and is more than worth learning to make well. I hope you give it a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for 6 portions Roasted Red Potatoes:
2 pounds red potatoes, cut in evenly-sized pieces
salt, pepper, cayenne to taste
thyme sprigs, add whole and remove barren twigs after cooked
1/4 to 1/3 cup olive oil
1/2 large red bell pepper, seeded, cut in chunks

52 comments:

Tom from Fogtown said...

Hi Chef!! Would these potatoes go well with your recent Tuscan Flank steak recipe? I'm hoping so!!

Chef John said...

I think we both know the answer to that ;)

Joshua said...

YUM

Anonymous said...

Chef, would these potatoes go with cayenne????

Anonymous said...

Well now I am embarrassed! I use the pre-ground pepper. Don't judge me, I didn't know!!
Chef, you may have explained this before, but why is fresh ground pepper better? Thank you for your videos! You make me look like a great cook (well, except for my black pepper shame)!

Anonymous said...

Hey Chef,

could i use the 'common' potatoe? in my country it's hard to find those 'red' ones.

Sand said...

Hey Chef John,
What size is that pan?
I keep seeing it in your videos and wondering????

These potatoes look great! I have some growing in pots in the back yard (SOOooo easy to grow in pots---maybe I should do a video??) and they are ready to harvest!
YUM!

Anonymous said...

Does anyone have any idea why I wouldn't be able to see the video on my computer? This is a recent development. I just have a black rectangle where the video should be---no arrow--not nothin'.
Jackie
PS Obviously I'm not a techie.

Dawn (Dawn's Recipes) said...

I make my potatoes this ways (tho I never tried the extra 15 min trick!) but with onions instead of peppers. I'll have to give it a try now.

Donna said...

I love potatoes ... but roasted is my all time favorite ... they look amazing John!

Sandra from Montreal said...

Yum! We actually tried the Tuscan flank steak on Father's Day (it was WONDERFUL - even the leftovers , cold, were amazing!) and these would have been fantastic with that! For anyone who's short on time, I believe you can probably get almost as good results in a much shorter cook time by parboiling the potatoes first. Done after a bit of a boil, in a grill wok, we find they're amazing done on the BBQ. Thanks again so much for all the inspirational, easy-to-follow recipes, Chef John :)

Chef John said...

Jackie,

It's probably your browser. You should update it, or test on another browser. I'm not a techie either! ;)

Chef John said...

fresh pepper just tastes...fresher!

LibStre said...

Okay, I'll admit it: I'm a nerd, and I noticed that the cubes were actually squares; so, imagine the giggle you gave me when your video showed the "Nerds" comment. Great sense of humor, Chef John--you busted me! Looking forward to preparing this recipe and serving it with your Beef Tenderloin with Carmelized Tomato and Mushroom Sauce (made it last night...for about the fifth time--its a family fav).

Chef John said...

i love nerds! thanks!

Anonymous said...

Please Chef John,

may i please have some more?

Anonymous said...

Braised Lentils pplleeaassee

Matt said...

I still much prefer goose fat for roasted potatoes. In my opinion, they result in the best you can get. Not exactly healthy, but who cares?

Jameisha said...

Chef John, Can I substitute fresh thyme sprigs for dried thyme?

Anonymous said...

Chef John,
I am terribly allergic to bell peppers...any suggestions for a substitution? I'm ok with cayenne and use it quite frequently. Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Chef John, thanks for responding to my lame request about my lack of video. I checked for updates---there were none to be had. I finally just turned off my computer and when I rebooted, my videos were back! I believe in magic.
Gonna have those potatoes tonight.
Thanks for the BBITW. (BEST BLOG IN THE WORLD)
Jackie

Anonymous said...

Hi Chef John,

Will the potatoes taste as amazing if i were to roast them in duck fats? :)

Mildred

Dan and Hilary said...

Awesome, make this all the time, thanks so much for the demo and taking some guess work out.

Can you do this with duck fat and would that change cooking time/temp?

Chef John said...

Any fat or oil will work! Same temp is ok.

Anonymous said...

cool!

Chibby said...

Making your yellow roasted potatoes tonight to go with my jagersnitzel.Simply because I have the yellow on hand and not the reds.Thanks for the inspiration!

Kurt said...

Chef John.........could you please demonstrate a recipe for Falafel. I love Falafel, but can't seem to get it to turn out right. Thanks.

Tom from Fogtown said...

Hey Chef!! I made these potatoes tonight, they turned out great and went perfectly with the Tuscan Flank steak recipe!! Bombtastic!! Lol

Unknown said...

Excuse me, can I add sliced onions to the 20 minute second round in the oven or later?

Airbnb Superhost said...

Thanks for doing this video...you are the best!
Would a glass/pyrex baking dish be okay?

Chef John said...

Yes! Onions are OK! Pyrex is OK too! :-)

Mom-Gram Dee said...

Chef John, my hubby and I just watched the Rusty Chicken video, and he said, "GET THAT RECIPE!" I've been from one place to the next, and can't find it....where do I find the recipes?
Love your videos, and your unique style...easy, good food....Thanks!
Dee

Chef John said...

I haven't posted yet, that's today's post! Stay tuned.

Festizzeo said...

These would be so good in a sandwich with bacon, two fried eggs, mushrooms, baked beans in a separate bowl, black pudding on the side with nothing other than a pitcher of ice cold bloody Mary with tabasco and celery salt. And good shit to watch on the TV.

Me.Eat.Food said...

I could eat these potatoes for dessert!!!! Thanks for teaching us how to make this classic potato dish. I've learned more about technique from watching your videos than any cookbook or website. Thanks Chef John!

Mary Beth and George said...

i plan on making these but substituting fresh purple basil and some garlic. Don't have a bell pepper but next time I am trying them your way. Thanks.

Razors Edge said...

Well, I'm trying this out right now but because I'm making your recipe for braised short ribs I'm cooking them at 325F... wish I had two ovens right now but I'll tell you how they turn out.

I might change the cooking time slightly and blast them at 450F for a few minutes after I pull out the ribs... L8R Ch3f J0hn

Razors Edge said...

Hey, follow up here.... things turned out great. Although I was cooking these at 325F I had them in the oven for 1 1/2 hours, almost as long as the short ribs.

They turned just like yours... really really nice way to do potatoes, and very simple.

Thank you.

Helen said...

These were the BEST Roasted Red Potatoes that I have ever had!!! I didn't have the red bell pepper, so I used sliced onion. My seasonings were fresh rosemary sprigs (also some of the rosemary removed and chopped), fresh sage leaves, fresh dried oregano (all organic seasonings), plus the rest of Chef John's instructions. The flavor was the bomb!!! My husband usually mashes up his roasted red potatoes and puts butter on them...he didn't do that with these. He said he could just eat them and eat them all day they were so good! I loved the cooking technique and the crispiness of the potatoes on the outside and how moist and tender they were on the inside. No need for anything else. I got carried away with all of the seasonings, but this recipe gives you the opportunity to try things differently as long as you follow the cooking directions to a tee! Thanks soooooo much for this how-to-video, Chef John!! I give them 5 Stars +!!

Chef John said...

Thanks! Glad you enjoyed!

Tim said...

Thanks for sharing Chef John! I do these potatoes from time to time with "normal" potatoes and easier than your way:
I cut the potatoes, put them on a baking paper on the grill, coat them with olive oil, sprinkle salt, pepper, herbs de Provence, sometimes caraway. In the oven it takes about 30min @ about 200°C and I get the exact same (looking) result with less effort and time :-)

Even better (please don't blame me) is putting a tin of smoked pork chop or something on the grill too. This gives 5min prep-time, half an hour waiting and a great meal :)
Perfekt for everyone who wants a quick and easy meal.

Ruth person said...

Greetings to you good sir,
Can one parboil the potatoes first before roasting them or is that considered the work of satan?

Chef John said...

Sure!

pamela said...

Would adding onions work when adding red pepper? If so, would you cut it up similar to the way the red pepper is shown cut up

Chef John said...

Sure!

Anonymous said...

Chef John,
Is it okay if I put some onions and garlic after the "30 minutes" of baking time ?

Anonymous said...

Can I partially cook these a day ahead and fininsh them the next day? I don't have time to cook them the whole time before the meas but not sure how they would be. Please help! Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous - best potatoes I ever ate. I'm making them for the family this Rosh Hashanah with beef brisket. Yum! Thanks Chef John

GPLongwood said...

Can this be done in a toaster over? If so, how long?

Thanks, you're the best:-)

Chef John said...

Can't give time, but yes it can.

Anonymous said...

Always wondering what the best olive oil is yo use with roasting potatoes. Can you help?

ChristineDux said...

I am so happy I found you, Chef John. I've been worried, panicked, and agitated about roasted potatoes for so long--that I stopped even trying to make them. Now I understand what's needed. My first try following your technique was a success!