Jamie Oliver’s ‘important’ cooking tips for ‘perfect’ roast potatoes

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Jamie Oliver has many tips and tricks in the kitchen, many of which can be used when roasting potatoes. Whether you’re looking for the “perfect” spuds to accompany your Sunday roast or want some fragrant potatoes to serve alongside a hearty salad, the popular TV chef has a recipe for everything. He shared three ways to cook “crispy” yet “fluffy” Maris Piper’s. 

Speaking about his versatile recipe for roast potatoes, Jamie said: “I’m mad for roast potatoes. Crispy on the outside and fluffy inside, we’re going to do it three ways – goose fat potatoes,  butter clementine, rosemary, garlic, and extra virgin olive oil.

“The Maris Piper is an incredible potato – fluffy and starchy.” Jamie noted that the first step to making “perfect” roasties is to peel the potatoes, chop them into equal-sized chunks and get them into a pan of boiling, salted water on the hob.

He added that “the best” roast potatoes he had “ever made” came from a time when he thought he had overcooked them to make something almost resembling mash instead.

While this is a fine line to tread at the boiling stage, the TV chef explained that the key to cooking the spuds perfectly is to boil them until they just “think about breaking up”.

Once cooked, drain the potatoes in a colander. Jamie said: “Thit steaming part here now is also incredibly, incredibly important.”

As the potatoes cool in the colander, the starch will appear fluffy and white with “flecks and flakes” that cook to form the crispy bits left over in the pan and the “crunchy” skin on the outside of each potato.

In the first oven-proof dish, Jamie poured some extra virgin olive oil. For the second pan, he added a knob of butter and half as much oil. In the third dish, he used three to four tablespoons of goose fat to give the potatoes a “rich flavour”.

He said: “A little secret ingredient that I do is a swig – tablespoon of red wine vinegar. It will disappear and what’s left is a really subtle kind of tang that helps make the perfect roast potatoes.”

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Other ingredients you can add to your roast potatoes include fresh rosemary, thyme, garlic cloves with the skin left on, sage, bay leaves and the zest of clementines.

Before adding the cooked potatoes, Jamie “chuffed” them in the colander using a shaking and tossing motion.

While still hot, he added them to each pan and coated the spuds in the fats and flavourings.

He recommended putting the potatoes in a preheated oven at 180-190C for five to 60 minutes to crisp up.

He explained that during this time, they will get “gorgeous and golden and crispy”, though you should check on them at around the 40-minute mark for the best results.

The chef explained that at this point, you can do one more thing to make them “incredible”. Jamie’s tip was to take the trays out of the oven and squash the spuds.

Jamie said: “Place a potato masher on top and then just let it pop and let the lovely starchy inside just poof out, and then create a flatter surface area on the bottom and the top.”

This should be done across the whole tray before putting the potatoes back into the oven for another 10 minutes.

When the potatoes are done, you should hear them sizzling with crunchy skin on the outside. 

Once you remove them from the oven, Jamie recommended shaking the trays to coat them in the residue seasoning.

He said: “You can see and you can hear there is crispy perfection in the house. Goose fat potatoes, the butter, the potatoes with the clementine – the smell in this room!

“Crispy, fluffy, perfect tangy little gorgeous roast potatoes.”

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