This is the recipe that Peter Berley (in Fresh Food Fast) pairs with the baked escarole and eggs recipe that I blogged about yesterday. The potatoes are steamed briefly (to speed up the roasting time) and then tossed with crushed cumin, garlic, salt, chipotles in adobo sauce, olive oil, lemon juice, fresh thyme, and paprika. Then the potatoes are baked on a cookie sheet at a very high temperature until crisp on the outside and tender on the inside. Berley warns in the headnotes that these are “some really spicy roasted potatoes,” but I chose small-ish chipotles, and our potatoes turned out spicy but not as fiery as I expected. I liked the potatoes a lot, and Derek loved them. There’s something about spicy, crispy roast potatoes that’s just very satisfying on a cold autumn day. And the lemon juice and garlic add a little acidity and bite, which contrast nicely with the dark, roasted, smoky flavors of the cumin, paprika, and adobo sauce.
The head notes say you can skip the steaming and just bake the potatoes for longer at a slightly lower temperature. We did it that way the last two times, with only one minor problem: The marinade that falls off the potatoes onto the cookie sheet gets a little burnt.
We used fine sea salt, and so cut the listed amount of salt (for coarse salt) in half.
The recipe calls for 1/3 cup of oil, and the second time we made these Derek used 1/4 cup, which resulted in pretty oily potatoes. The next time we reduced the oil to 3 Tbs., and they were better.
Update March 3, 2013:
The recipe calls for 2 pounds of potatoes, but I had quite a bit of marinade left in the bowl after tossing it with the potatoes. So I increased the amount of potatoes to 2.25 pounds (and 3 Tbs. of oil) without any loss in crispiness or flavor. Next time I want to try 2.5 pounds.
We served these potatoes for brunch (for seven people) along with one large (German-sized) bunch of kale and poached eggs. For dessert I served my cranberry pumpkin bread. It made a nice, filling brunch. Altogether there was enough food, but if there had been more kale and potatoes, I’m pretty sure people would have eaten more. Maybe it would have been enough potatoes if I had made 2.5 pounds and if we had only had six people.