Recipe: ‘TATERS!

This is a very simple but rewarding recipe.  All you need is potatoes, spices, cooking fat/oil and some patience.

Few things are as tasty as roasted potatoes, and this recipe is utterly flexible.  You can spice them up and have them on their own, season them just with salt and pepper and serve them topped with cheese and sour cream, stir them into a warm potato salad or even top with pulled pork!  You really can do anything.

In the basic recipe I use rapeseed oil, but if giving them an Italian flavour you can use good quality olive oil and Italian spices, or for a really indulgent treat use duck or goose fat!

Several different things will affect how crunchy your potatoes are after cooking, including whether you leave the skin on or not, what you cook them in and what method you use to cook them.  For the very crispiest potatoes, peel them before steaming/boiling, the rough them up a bit.  Saute them in oil or roast them in duck or goose fat but keep in mind, fat will significantly increase the calorie count of these fellas, and may be best left as a treat!  For the basic recipe, the potatoes are coated in oil and roasted in the oven.

I know I usually have a fairly descriptive name for my recipes, but in our house, everyone knows what “Taters” means, and these really are so good that I’m sure it won’t be long before everyone in yours knows what “Taters” are too.

TATERS

I'll admit, the low calorie aspects may be cancelled out by the cheese and garlic and herb dip. . .
I’ll admit, the low calorie aspects may be cancelled out by the cheese and garlic and herb dip. . .

Time: 55 minutes including steaming and baking time

Serves 2, Basic Recipe 310 calories per serving

You will need:

  • 500g potatoes
  • 2 tbsp rapeseed (canola) oil
  • dried herbs and spices to taste/to recipe
  • salt and pepper

Method:

  1. Cut the potatoes into bite size pieces and either steam or boil them for approximately 20 minutes or until tender.
  2. When they have finished cooking, drain and shake the pot or steam tray to roughen up the edges, then transfer for a baking dish.
  3. Add the oil and seasonings to the potatoes, stir and bake in the oven for 25 minutes, stirring regularly.
  4. Serve immediately.

Recipe Variations:

This recipe is so flexible that really your imagination is the only limit.  For inspiration though, here are a few tasty variations.  The method is the same as in the basic recipe, unless stated otherwise.

Italian Herb Roasted Taters

  • steamed/boiled potato pieces
  • 1 tsp each of dried parsley, thyme, rosemary, oregano and basil, sea salt and  pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced
  • handful of cherry tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  1. In a baking dish, coat the potatoes with the oil and seasonings.  Sprinkle over the sliced garlic and tuck the cherry tomatoes in amongst the potatoes.
  2. Bake for 25 minutes.
  3. Serve topped with shavings of Parmesan.

Fiery Southwest Tater Bites

  • steamed/boiled potatoes
  • 2 roasted red peppers, sliced (fresh is always best but tinned would do just fine)
  • 1 tsp each of garlic powder, onion granules and salt
  • tinned black beans/kidney beans
  • 2 tsp cayenne pepper powder
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream
  • sliced jalapenos
  • 2 tbsp chili oil
  1. Add the potatoes, red pepper, beans and spices to a baking dish and coat with the chili oil.  Since this recipe really turns up the heat, feel free to replace the chili oil with rapeseed or olive oil.
  2. Roast for 25 minutes.
  3. Serve topped with a tablespoon of sour cream and sliced jalapenos.

Terribly Tasty Bacon Cheddar Taters

  • 10 streaky rashers (bacon)
  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 c grated cheddar
  • spring onions, sliced thin
  • Sour cream/garlic mayo/garlic sauce (optional)
  1. Saute the rashers in a wide, deep pan, and set aside.  Do not throw out the rasher fat as you will need this to cook the potatoes.  Add a dribble of oil if there is not enough fat to coat the potatoes.
  2. Add the onion and garlic slices to the pan of rasher fat and saute for 30 seconds.  Add the potatoes and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Saute, stirring frequently, until the potatoes are warmed through and crispy.
  4. Divide and top with the cheddar.  Crumble the cooked rashers over the top and sprinkle with the spring onions.  If using sour cream/sauce, add as desired.

Sausage and Tater Casserole

  • steamed/boiled potato pieces
  • 12 raw cocktail sausages
  • 1 cup thick-sliced shallots
  • 4 garlic cloves, thickly sliced
  • 1 cup button mushrooms
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 2 tbsp Lea & Perins Worchestershire sauce
  • 1 tsbp wholegrain mustard
  1. Add all ingredients to the baking dish, mix with the Lea & Perins and mustard.
  2. Bake for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes and serve immediately with crusty bread.

Extra Indulgent Holiday Taters

  • steamed/boiled potato pieces without skins, shaken until the edges are roughed
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 4 cloves garlic, halved
  • 1/4 c sliced leeks (white part only)
  • 1/4 cup duck or goose fat, warmed until liquid
  1. Add all ingredients to a baking dish and stir in the fat.
  2. Roast for 30 minutes, tossing every few minutes.
  3. Serve immediately.

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