Tag Archives: potatoes

Potato Gratin with Tomatoes

This dish really is very simple to do, feeds the masses and goes with everything.  What’s not to like??  Desiree or red potatoes are good here, if you go for a very floury potato they will disintegrate more – though that’s not the end of the world.  There’s nothing worse than an undercooked potato!

  • 2kg potatoes, peeled
  • 2 red onions, peeled and cut into thin wedges
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely sliced
  • 100ml olive oil
  • 6 tomatoes, cut into quarters
  • Salt and pepper

Get your largest oven dish and cut a piece of non stick baking parchment to fit the top of the dish.  Preheat the oven to 170C/Fan 150C/Gas 3.

Slice the potatoes with a mandolin or a similar contraption (I have something called a JML Super Slicer) and place in a large bowl.  Throw in the onions and garlic, then add the olive oil and plenty of salt and pepper and mix well to combine.  You can use your hands, it’s easier!

Put the potato mixture into your big dish and move everything around till it’s evenly distributed and the potatoes are flattish.  Then take your tomato quarters and poke them into the top layers of potato at regular intervals so they are just peeking out.  Press it all down with your hands.

Now cover the top of the dish with the piece of parchment you cut earlier.  Don’t be tempted to use foil here as it may react with the tomatoes and turn the whole dish black!

Put the dish into the preheated oven and cook for 2 hours, taking the parchment off for the last 15 minutes so the potatoes can crisp up a bit.  Enjoy!

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Dal

There are many, many versions of dal out there and this is just one of them.  It’s a good one though!

  • 225g red lentils
  • 900ml water
  • 3 cloves
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 40g butter
  • salt

Rinse the lentils thoroughly.  Put them in a pan with the water, cloves and some salt and bring to the boil.  Simmer, uncovered, for about 20 minutes until mushy.  You will need to skim the foam off the top of the lentils from time to time.

While the lentils are cooking, heat a dry frying pan till it’s very hot and then toast the cumin, coriander and mustard seeds in it.  I usually find that moving them around in a hot pan for about a minute does the trick.  You want to smell the aroma of the seeds.  Put the toasted seeds into a pestle and mortar and grind them to a rough powder.

When the lentils are cooked, add all the other ingredients and stir gently to combine.  Test the seasoning – I add a bit more salt but see what you think.

Serve this with rice or naan and veg or just with some plain bread for lunch.  It makes a great soup too if you add a touch more water.

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Lime Pickle Potatoes

This is yummy – if you like lime pickle!  If you don’t then maybe try another dish…

  • 1.2 kg potatoes
  • 280g jar lime pickle
  • sunflower oil
  • salt

Preheat oven to 220C/Fan 200/Gas 8.  Leave the skin on the potatoes.  Cut them into small pieces, about an inch or so square, and then put them into a large roasting tin.  Slosh some sunflower oil into the tin, sprinkle a bit of salt and then add the lime pickle and mix thoroughly.

Pop the tray into the hot oven.  The potatoes should take about an hour to cook, you will need to turn them from time to time as they will probably be quite a tight fit in the tray and you want them to cook evenly.  Also the lime pickle with blacken in places – just turn it into the dish and let another bit blacken.

These are great served with Dal and some veg.  They also go down well as a sort of tapas style snack with a few beers!

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Potato Wedges

I have been asked for my recipe for potato wedges so here it is!  Floury potatoes are best for wedges, if you’re not sure just go for ‘baking potatoes’ they will usually have the right texture.FullSizeRender-3

  • 1.5 kg floury potatoes
  • 1 tsp oil
  • heaped teaspoon sea salt flakes

Heat your oven to it’s highest setting.

Cut the potatoes into wedges, I usually find eighths are about right but if they are very large potatoes you might need to go to sixteenths.  Put the wedges into a large bowl.

Now you need to get the excess moisture off your potatoes.  I do this by getting some good quality paper kitchen towel, plunging it into the bowl of potato pieces and moving it around until it is wet, then doing it again.  I’m sure you could use a clean tea towel for this if you don’t want to use paper kitchen towel.

Now drizzle your teaspoon of oil all around the bowl of potatoes, sprinkle the salt flakes too, and toss the potatoes well to combine.  They will have the tiniest coating of oil!  Spread the potatoes out onto two large baking trays and put into the hot oven.

The wedges should take about 30-40 minutes to cook.  You will need to take them out of the oven every 10 minutes and toss them to stop them sticking – the oven is very hot and they WILL stick a bit and some of them will break when you toss them but don’t worry, just scrape them up and put them back in, the bits that have stuck and broken will go lovely and crispy when they are all done.

Pile all of the wedges onto one tray and tuck in!  This recipe makes loads of wedges which is just right for my family of five, but obviously you can make much smaller portions by reducing the quantities.