Saturday, May 6, 2017

Back to Basics: Roasting Potatoes


It's time for Back to Basics, a series on basic techniques to help people eat better and hopefully feel more confident in the kitchen. I was inspired to start this series by talking with friends and family and finding that while most people know some specific techniques or dishes really well they may not know some other basics that could help add some variety or nutrition to their daily meals. 







You may have seen these pop up in some previous posts and I know I've talked about roasting potatoes and other vegetables before and it's for a very good reason. Roasting is an easy and healthy way to cook a wide variety of foods and adds a lot of flavor with relatively little effort. If done right, it can add that crispy, crunchy, caramelized exterior that packs so much flavor and texture and is a much healthier option than frying and less work than cooking on the stove top.





So, we'll be going step by step through the process to make these potatoes which can be a delicious addition to any meal. They are great paired with eggs and fruit for breakfast or meat and vegetables for dinner. I've eaten them with my Mushroom Gravy or tossed in butter and herbs, with ketchup or just plain.



As always, feel free to Chef Around and make this the way you want with whatever spices, herbs, toppings, or additions you have or want to try!








Roasting Potatoes


Ingredients

4 medium sized Red Potatoes
1 Tbs Olive Oil
1 tsp Sea Salt
1/2 tsp freshly cracked Black Pepper

Directions

Baking Temperature and Time
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F or higher. You can adjust your baking time and temperature to have your potatoes finish when you want. I find this handy when timing around cooking something else or trying to time dinner with Heather so I'm sure you will find a use for this information as well. 

Raw
Halfway before turning
I will give you photo references here and encourage you to use these as a guide rather than strict timing. It's better to train yourself to cook with your senses and learn to judge by sight and feel (and taste!). 

Halfway after turning
Done
For reference: at 375 degrees it took about one hour to roast these potatoes but you can cut that time down by increasing the temperature or cutting them into smaller pieces, just remember to do visual checks to make sure you don't burn your potatoes at higher temperatures.

Your pan and liner are very important here as well. You want a low or no rim baking sheet for optimal browning and preferably a silicone or paper liner to prevent sticking and make the turning and cleaning easier. The liners I use are silicone and amazing and I highly recommend checking out these Silicone Baking Liners if you do any amount of baking or roasting or want to start now!






Preparation

It's just five quick, easy steps!
1. Wash and dry your potatoes and remove any eyes or bad spots.

2. Cut potatoes into 1/2-1 inch uniform pieces depending on preference.


3. Toss potatoes, olive oil, salt, and pepper in a bowl to coat all pieces evenly.

4. Spread evenly on your lined baking sheet.


5. Bake until golden brown and soft on the inside. Turning every 20-30 minutes to ensure an even roast. 




Enjoy!




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