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Crispy Roast Potatoes | Easy

Crispy Roast Potatoes
Crispy Roast Potatoes piled into a white bowl with a salt pot and a blue serving spoon

Who doesn’t like Crispy Roast Potatoes, golden brown chunks of potato, coated with garlic-infused oil and roasted till they’re crisp, and crunchy on the outside, and soft and fluffy on the inside?

They’re roasted in a garlic-infused extra virgin olive oil, then when golden they’re tossed in the fried garlic that infused the oil, and dusted with salt flakes and fresh pepper. Add a smidge of finely chopped parsley, and you’ve got the best Crispy Roast Potatoes. We seriously mean the best!

These Are The Ultimate Crispy Roast Potatoes

Now we know that’s a big claim but just hang on a minute and we’ll tell you why!

We discovered the secret for making Crispy Roast Potatoes from J. Kenji Lopez-Alt who goes into great detail as to why this method works by adding bi-carb soda (baking soda) into the cooking water.

At a Glance This Is What You Need To Make Crispy Roast Potatoes

ingredients to make crispy roast potatoes

Pantry

olive oil
salt
freshly milled black pepper
bi-carb / baking soda

Shopping List

potatoes
parsley or rosemary or thyme
garlic

Why This Works (In A Nutshell)

Parboiling the potatoes with salt and bicarb soda (baking soda) which is alkaline, breaks down the potato surfaces,  creating tons of starchy slurry for added surface area and crunch.

When the potatoes are just cooked you drain them and then give them a good toss to make all of the edges fluffy. Fluffy equals crunch!

The Trick Of How To Make Roast Potatoes Crispy – With Easy Steps

  1. Bring a large pot of water to the boil
  2. While the water comes to the boil peel and cut the potatoes into roughly the same sized pieces
  3. When the water comes to a rolling boil add the salt, bi-carb and the potatoes
  4. While the potatoes cook add the oil to a frying pan and using a medium heat fry the garlic until it is a light golden colour
  5. Strain the garlic and reserve both the garlic and oil
  6. Finely chop any herbs that you are using and reserve

What Is The Best Potato For Roast Potatoes

Potatoes are categorised into 3 basic types starchy, waxy, and all-purpose. For this recipe, Kenji uses Russet (also known as Idaho potatoes), or Yukon gold. Both of these potato varieties are considered starchy.

Other suitable varieties to use:

  • King Edward – the best common variety for roasting
  • Desiree – ranks with King Edward as one of the best roasting potatoes
  1. Using a knife, test that the potatoes are cooked, the potato should offer little resistance as the potato should be soft but still holding together
  2. Strain the potatoes and leave for a minute to steam dry
  3. Place the potatoes into a large bowl and season with the black pepper, a good pinch of salt and then pour over the reserved garlic infused oil
  4. Toss the potatoes in the bowl until the potatoes are roughed up as shown
  5. Using a flat tray or low sided pan spread the potatoes out so they are not crowded.
  6. Bake in a preheated oven for approximately 45 minutes, turn the potatoes frequently during this time

Hot Tip – Boiling Potatoes

Ordinarily, you would start to cook your potatoes in cold water which ensures the potatoes exterior doesn’t cook before the inside cooks.

However, we actually want the outside of the potatoes to cook and soften before the inside cooks fully to give us the fluffy, and craggy exterior once the potatoes are drained then shaken. So we add the potatoes once the water is boiling.

Boiling and Shaking The Potatoes

These are the key steps to achieving potatoes that are crunchy with a soft tender centre. The potatoes are boiled till they’re just tender. Once you’ve drained them allow the steam to evaporate off for 30-60 seconds.

Now comes the bit that makes them so crunchy. What you’re wanting to achieve here is to shake the potatoes until there is a thin slurry of what will look like mashed potatoes covering each piece. This potato slurry is what makes the exterior crisp and crunchy.

a large white bowl full of crispy roast potatoes

Infusing The Oil To Roast Potatoes

Infusing the chopped garlic into the olive oil allows the oil to take on the garlic flavour without the garlic burning.

Tossing the potatoes with the golden brown garlic and parsley builds up the flavour and allows the garlic and parsley to cling to the hot cooked potatoes.

Roast Potatoes In Duck Fat

Instead of using oil, you could switch it up by making the Crispy Roast Potatoes using duck, or goose fat for a truly memorable potato. Once only found in high-end deli’s and gourmet stores at a ridiculous price. Both of these fats are now widely available in supermarkets and are very affordable. Go ahead and give it a try, you won’t be sorry.

You can reuse the fat by simply straining and removing any bits of potato and refrigerate in a glass jar ready to use. The fat lasts for months, and months if kept refrigerated. Duck or goose fat also freezes well.

Watch How To Make Crispy Roast Potatoes

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Use A Low Sided Baking Sheet

The potatoes need to be baked on a baking sheet, not a deep sided baking tin otherwise the high sides will create steam which makes the potatoes soggy. Got It!

Can I Par Boil Potatoes For Roasting The Day Before ?

Yes, you can. Potatoes can be prepared 2 days ahead.

Prep the potatoes and cook up to the stage of boiling then draining and shaking the potatoes to rough them up and toss them in the oil (up to step 11). Refrigerate covered preferably on a tray in a single layer. When you’re ready to bake them remove the tray from the fridge and bake away.

Check Out Some More Winning Potato Recipes:

Crispy Hasselback potatoes

Crispy Smashed Roast New Potatoes

Candied Sweet Potatoes

Orange Glazed Sweet Potato Slices

Pommes Anna

Whipped Creamy Mashed Potatoes

Don’t forget to rate this recipe and let us know what you thought when you make these fabulous Crispy Roast Potatoes in the reviews below. 

Crispy Roast Potatoes piled into a white bowl with a salt pot and a blue serving spoon
Yield: 8 - 10 serves

Crispy Roast Potatoes | Easy

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes

Crispy roast potatoes are the ultimate crispy roast potato, crunchy on the outside and fluffy on the inside.

Recipe adapted from J. Kenji Lopez-Alt at Serious Eats

Originally published Dec 2019

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 tablespoon salt - see note 4 below
  • 1 teaspoon bi-carb soda (baking soda)
  • 2 kilo potatoes suitable for roasting cut into large uniform chunks (4 pounds)
  • 5 tablespoons extra virgin  olive oil or duck, or goose fat
  • 4 fat cloves of garlic, finely minced
  • salt flakes and ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley, rosemary, thyme etc

Instructions

  1. preheat oven to 230c (450f) bake or if using a fan-forced oven 200c (400f)
  2. add 4 litres / 8.5 pints of water to a large pot and bring to a boil
  3. peel potatoes and cut into even sized pieces
  4. when the water comes to a rolling boil add salt and bicarb soda (baking soda) and potatoes
  5. whilst potatoes cook heat oil and garlic in a small pan, cooking 2-3 minutes or until garlic just changes colour and immediately strain the oil into a bowl and reserve both the oil and the garlic - see note 1 below
  6. finely chop the herbs and put aside
  7. test the potatoes with a knife or skewer (potatoes should offer a little resistance as the potato should be soft, but still holding together)
  8. strain potatoes and allow to steam for a minute
  9. place potatoes into the bowl with the reserved garlic oil and season with pepper and a good pinch of salt
  10. toss the potatoes in the bowl until the potatoes are roughed up as shown in image 11
  11. using a flat tray, or low sided pan spread potatoes evenly so they are not crowded
  12. bake in a preheated oven for approximately 45 minutes, turning the potatoes frequently during this time - see note 2 below
  13. when potatoes are golden and crisp tip potatoes into a bowl and toss with reserved garlic along with the herbs, salt, and pepper
  14. serve and enjoy!

Notes

  1. Cook the garlic in the oil using a medium heat as the garlic will easily burn before it's cooked at higher temperatures,  strain immediately the garlic is a light golden colour
  2. Cook the potatoes for 10 - 15 minutes before turning for the first time, this allows the potatoes to form a crust and release from the tray without sticking.
  3. If cooking a smaller quantity of potatoes try to keep the same ratio of bi-carb and salt to the water eg: 2 litres / 4 pints water 1/2 teaspoon of bi-carb and 1 1/4 tablespoons of salt.
  4. It sounds like a lot of salt but remember that most of it will be strained away,

Nutrition Information

Yield

10

Serving Size

1

Amount Per Serving Calories 323Total Fat 13gSaturated Fat 3gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 9gCholesterol 20mgSodium 97750mgCarbohydrates 43gFiber 5gSugar 2gProtein 10g

Nutritional information provided here is only intended as a guide.

Cooper at 14 weeks

We came across these photos recently and had to think about where they were taken, then we realised it was here at home. It has been so long since we have had any meaningful rain, the lawns are dead, and the shrubs and gardens are either dead, or dying!

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2 comments

  1. Deborah Martin says:

    curious, why the ddition of baking soda to the potatoes when boiling, I have never done that, interested to learn the reason

    1. Recipe Winners says:

      Hi Deborah, this recipe has been adapted from a recipe by J. Kenji Lopez-Alt who explains that alkaline water helps the exteriors of the potatoes break down more, creating much more of the starchy slurry that leads to an extra-crisp exterior. Hope this helps. They are definitely worth trying. Jo and Jen

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