The world’s best roast potatoes
A dash of vinegar or lemon juice added to the water while par-boiling the potatoes prevents them from falling apart if you accidentally over boil them. Another neat variation is adding a dusting of flour over the potatoes after boiling and before roasting. This creates a light, crumbly batter effect.
Ingredients (serves 8–10):
2kg potatoes (you want a floury potato, not waxy, for roasting)
Sunflower or canola oil
1 heaped tsp salt
1. Preheat the oven to 170°C
2. Peel the potatoes and cut in half lengthways.
3. Place the potatoes in a large saucepan or casserole dish, cover with water and bring to the boil.
4. Simmer for about 12–15 minutes, depending on the size. Drain and return the pan to a medium heat. Shake the pot around for a minute or so, you’ll see the steam evaporating and the edges of the potatoes ruffling up.
5. Place the potatoes in a roasting tin and drench in oil (this is one of the secrets). Sprinkle with salt and toss together. Make sure you keep your potatoes spread out over a large area. If they are covered up at all they’ll steam rather than roast. Use two roasting pans if you must, and just swap them around in the oven every 30 minutes or so.
6. Place in the oven and bake for 1 hour, turning frequently.
7. Reduce the temperature to 150°C and continue to roast for a further 30 minutes.
8. Remove and allow to cool for a few minutes before serving with lots of delicious gravy.
This is just another affirmation of why potatoes are the king of all comfort foods — satisfying, moreish and incredibly versatile.
With thanks to Jules Mercer for her beautiful recipes and styling.