Friday, 7 April 2017

Harissa and garlic smashed potatoes

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Serves 3 as part of side
Charlotte potatoes- 10
Olive oil- 4 tbsp
Harissa paste- 2 tsp
Garlic- 6 pods, peeled and finely chopped
Salt- to taste
Parmesan or Grana Padano cheese- 1/4 cup, finely grated
Chopped parsley- to garnish

Wash and scrub the potatoes and cook them in a pan of boiling water for about 20 minutes or till they are just about fork tender.  
Drain and keep aside.

While the potatoes are boiling, take a small bowl and pour in the olive oil.
Into it add the harissa paste, garlic pods and salt to taste.
Give a thorough mix and keep aside till ready to use.
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Preheat oven grill/broiler to 200C and line a baking tray with kitchen foil.
Generously brush the foil with some of the olive oil (without any garlic bits). You can also use an oil spray if that's more convenient.

Place the potatoes on the tray, a few inches apart and using a potato masher, slightly smash them, without going all the way through, and by retaining the shape. If you mash it too much, the potatoes would break.
Douse or brush the smashed potatoes with the harissa paste and garlic olive oil, making sure there are a few garlic pieces on top of each of the potatoes. Be generous here and use up all the oil, as it adds to the flavour and also helps crisp up the potatoes a bit.

Place under the grill for about 10 to 12 minutes.
Take it out, top the grilled potatoes with the cheese and place it back under the grill for another 3 minutes or so, just until the cheese is melted.
Just before serving, sprinkle the chopped parsley, and serve warm.

Notes: We served this as a side to Roast pork and it was great.
You can use melted butter instead of olive oil for an enhanced taste.

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