In 2001, when I was 21 and a junior in college (that’s University for those of you in Europe), I traveled to England for the first time to participate in a study abroad program. Besides Cornish Pasties, warm ale and jerk chicken, the thing I fell in love with the most during those months was roast potatoes. Now you might be thinking, “Is this woman crazy – roast potatoes – really?!?!?”, but yes, roast potatoes. Yes, definitely roast potatoes.
Roast potatoes in England, are normally parboiled first, then tossed in hot oil before roasting in the oven, which ensures the outside of the potatoes form a crust while the insides are fluffy and soft. It’s been almost 14 years since I arrived in England the first time, and still to this day, this way of eating potatoes is my favorite. I’ve freshened up this version of roast potatoes up by using Norwegian new potatoes plus a few cloves of garlic and by adding fresh chives and lemon juice to them once they come out of the oven. That way the chives don’t burn during roasting and the lemon really helps wake the dish up. This side dish is gluten free and pairs well with lamb during Easter, or any other roasted meat.
If you’d like to read more about my time as an exchange student, check out the Alumni Association interview I just did for Arizona State University (read it here). You can also read more of my tips for living and working abroad on the Alumni Association web site here.
- 1 kg. (about 2 lbs.) new (spring) potatoes or fingerling potatoes, skins on
- 1 bulb garlic, broken into cloves
- 4 tablespoons Sunflower Oil, or another neutral oil
- 2 tablespoons fresh chives, chopped
- juice of half a lemon
- sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- Heat your oven to 190ºC/375ºF. Wash, then cut your potatoes in half, or into chunks which are the same size. Place the potatoes and garlic into a large pot along with a tablespoon of salt, cover with cold water and bring to the boil.
- Allow the potatoes to boil for 8-10 minutes, or until they are partially cooked. Drain the potatoes and garlic in a colander and leave to steam dry for 5-7 minutes. While the potatoes are steaming, add the sunflower oil to a roasting pan and place it in the oven. You want the oil to get nice and warm, so that it can sear the outside of the potatoes and help get them crispy.
- Once the potatoes have steamed, toss your potatoes in the hot oil using a large spoon. Put your potatoes in the hot oven to cook for 30-35 minutes until lightly golden and cooked all the way through.
- Take the potatoes out of the oven and toss them with the chives and lemon juice, then season with salt and black pepper.