Potatoes are one of the most versatile vegetables-- they're great no matter how you cook them, and delicious and comforting no matter what season it is. They're also widely used in all different cultures, attesting to their universal appeal and adaptability. Potatoes can be a bit tricky though in that they require a longer cooking time than most vegetables. To this day, I still have nightmares about the time that I served undercooked oven-roasted potatoes to guests at a dinner party...! A great trick to reducing the cooking time for potatoes, whether you're frying or roasting them, is to par-boil them first-- this will not only reduce the time, but will result in potatoes that are soft and fluffy on the inside while pleasantly browned and crispy on the outside. Here's a refreshing and somewhat cathartic way to cook potatoes-- instead of mashing, roasting, or frying potatoes, try smashing them! I hope you enjoy this recipe!
- 12-15 baby potatoes (any kind will do)
- 2 teaspoons salt (plus more to taste)
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper (more or less to taste)
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
cook time: ~35min
adapted from closet cooking
1. Preheat the oven to 450F.
2. Place the potatoes in a small saucepan and fill with enough water to completely submerge them. Add 2 teaspoons of salt to the water and bring to a boil. Reduce to simmer and cook for 15-30 minutes (depending on the size) until the potatoes are tender and can be easily pierced with a fork. Drain.
3. Place the potatoes on a greased baking sheet. Coat them with olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. "Smash" the potatoes by pressing down on them with a potato masher or the bottom of a drinking glass (see picture).
4. Bake the potatoes for about 20 minutes until they are golden brown and crispy.
These are great as a side dish or an appetizer. They are great as is, or delicious topped with sour cream & green onions, or cheese & bacon! I served these as a side for a NY strip steak, alongside an arugula salad!