How to cook the perfect roast potato

How to cook the perfect roast potato

Steph  Baker our consultant managing the role
Date posted: 21/12/2020

Crunchy, golden, fluffy. Yes, we’re talking about roast potatoes. And we like to think we know what we’re talking about when it comes to the perfectly roasted spud.

According to 89% of the British public, roast potatoes are an essential trimming if you’re plating up the ideal roast dinner. These golden spuds blow all the other trimmings out the water, even Yorkshire puddings. Now it’s settled that a roast dinner isn’t complete without the potato, next we all need to agree on how to roast them to perfection. We’re going to share out top tips for how to cook the perfect roast potato that will leave your dinner guests with something to talk about… if you can bring yourself to share them out.

Step 1 – Get things hot in the kitchen

First things first, fire up that oven. Now, they say if you can’t stand the heat, get out the kitchen. But if you’re anything like Mohammed, who said cooking in a busy kitchen is the best part of a chef job, then that won’t be a problem. Start by setting the temperature to 200C or 180C for a fan oven.

Step 2 – Peel and chop

Grab your kilogram of potatoes and get prepping. Learning how to prep food is the first and most important thing any chef will learn to do. After all, prep work is the key to a chef’s success. Don’t be fooled into thinking a kitchen assistant is confined to slicing and dicing. No, they also learn how to chop julienne style, prepare meat and fillet fish – which, according to Paulo, was a highlight of his chef apprenticeship with M&B. Okay, back to the potatoes. Peel them and cut them into evenly sized pieces, around 5cm.

Step 3 – Boil them

Get those chopped potatoes into a large pan and add enough water so they’re just covered. You want to add cold water, otherwise, the outside will cook faster and we’re aiming for perfection here, remember. Add 1 teaspoon of salt and once the water has reached the boiling point, reduce it to a simmer and cook for another 2 minutes.

Step 4 - Time to fluff it up

Once they’re out the water and left to cool for a few minutes, pop them back in the pan with a lid on and give them a rustle them around. You want to fluff up the outside of the potatoes but go gently or you’ll open the pan to mashed potatoes. Fluffing is an essential step. Miss it and we’re sorry to say you won’t come close to the crispy roasties that our chefs lovingly prepare at Toby Carvery. Finally, sprinkle in 2 tablespoons of plain flour and give it another little shake to coat them – this will help them get that delicious crunch.

Step 5 – Into the oven

Your oven should be hot now, but for the potatoes to crisp up nicely you need to be popping them into piping hot oil or fat. Place the roasting tin in the oven with 5 tablespoons of goose fat, olive oil or butter and leave until it’s at maximum heat – around 3-5 minutes. If you’re a garlic fan (and let’s be honest, who isn’t?) here’s your moment. Mince 6 cloves and combine it with the oil, 1 teaspoon of salt, ½ teaspoon of pepper and 2 tablespoons of parsley or another herb.

Carefully spoon the potatoes onto the pan and mix them so they’re coated in the hot fat. Leave them for 15 minutes, then turn them and roast for another 15 minutes. Flip them around once more and then back in they go for 10-20 minutes, until they’re goldened to your liking. 

Learn from the very best chefs at M&B

Learning how to cook the perfect roast potato is surely a life skill that should be taught in school? Okay, maybe not quite but we do teach our chefs how to make these melt-in-your-mouth roast potatoes along with lots of other signature dishes and sides.

If you’re interested in learning from the very best, you won’t find a place better than M&B. Every member of the kitchen team receives the training they need, whether that’s learning how to grill the perfect steak at Miller & Carter, toss pizza dough at Stonehouse Pizza & Carvery or plate up the perfect Sunday roast at Toby Carvery. Find out more about our chef apprenticeships at M&B.

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