Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Better with butter

I like a spud as much as the next girl (ok, that's a lie - I find them a bit monotonous) but these fondant potatoes were a complete revelation.

I had no idea you could make a potato melt in the mouth without decimating it in a casserole, or give them such an intense flavour. But then I've never used half a pound of butter in one savoury dish before.

The scent of these bubbling their buttery herby juices away on the hob is the savoury equivalent of catching a waft of those wickedly enticing caramelised nuts floating down Oxford sniff and you're lost.

They go with, well everything really. I love.

serves 6

1.5kg king edward potatoes
250g butter
3 sprigs of fresh rosemary
3 bay leaves
a sprig of thyme
5 fat garlic cloves
a dozen black peppercorns
500ml vegetable stock

1) Trim each potato into barrel shapes of the same size - flat ends with equal, gently curved edges. Or if you're short of time or patience, just peel them and cut into equal sized pieces, around 8cm in length.

2) Melt the butter in a large pan and add the garlic, herbs and peppercorns, then add the potatoes and fry over a low/medium heat until they are golden brown (around 8-10 minutes) then flip over and brown the other side.

3) Carefully add the stock to the pan, then reduce the heat to a low simmer and allow the potatoes to cook through until tender, testing with a skewer or the tip of a knife after 10 minutes. Try not to move them in the pan too much or they will break up.

4) Drain the liquid away and serve while still piping hot.

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