Thursday, March 25, 2010

Roasted Purple Potatoes with Shallots, Garlic & Thyme

Serves 4

In this recipe, the potatoes and shallots are roasted separately ahead of time, then combined and roasted again when ready to serve.  These may seem like a lot of extra steps, but they ensure proper cooking of both the potatoes and shallots, and also allow for easy last minute work.  The extra steps make it easier in the long run. 


1 # small purple potatoes *
extra-virgin olive oil, as needed
2 large shallots, peeled and thinly sliced 
1 medium garlic clove, minced
1 tsp chopped fresh thyme leaves
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, as needed

Preheat the oven to 450°F.  Wash the potatoes in cool running water.  Slice into quarters.  Toss with about a tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil, just enough to coat.   Place on the lower-middle rack of the oven, and roast until tender and slightly browned, about 25-30 minutes, turning with a spatula after about 15 minutes. 

In a small mixing bowl, toss sliced shallots with about 2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil, just enough to coat.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss to combine.  Spread over a sheet tray lined with parchment paper.  Place on the upper-middle rack of the oven, just above the potatoes and roast until slightly caramelized, about 15-20 minutes, turning with a spatula after about 10 minutes. Cool to room temperature and reserve until needed, up to 2-3 hours. 

When ready to serve, preheat the oven to 375°F.  Heat a medium non-stick sauté pan over high heat for two minutes.  Add a scant tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil, and heat 1 minute more.  Add the potatoes, garlic and thyme, season with salt and pepper, and toss to combine.  Turn the heat to medium and sauté about 1 minute.  Move the pan to the oven, and roast about 7 minutes, until the potatoes are heated through and the garlic is golden brown.  Serve immediately. 

* This recipe works great for any sort of small potato.  Try it too with red (Red Bliss) or yellow (Yukon gold) or white-skinned potatoes.  Just stick with ones that are small and round, with smooth, waxy skins - the ones normally referred to as boiling potatoes.  Large, dusty-skinned potatoes like russets and Idaho’s have their time and place too (mashed potatoes!), but it’s not here.




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