I don’t know about you, but in my world, it’s pretty impossible to get by without potatoes. I mean, what would a burger be without fries? Or a steak sammich, or chicken fried steak, or so many other great meals.
On top of all that, there are hundreds of meals that would benefit from some well-roasted potatoes. The recipes below will all work with potato wedges, or the thick slices many call steak fries. But they’ll also work with cubes or quarters (for smaller potatoes). You could even use these ideas on hasselback potatoes for a special treat. But for the puposes of this recipe, let’s pretend we’r’e doing wedges or thick slices to go along with your latest sammich masterpiece. This is a Manly Kitchen, after all, so we’re going to go straight to the big ol’ fat mammerjammers that look so awesome on the plate next to a Manly Burger.
Let’s start with the basic (easiest) version, then work our way through some variations. All told, you’ll have eight ideas to work with, and you can certainly make adjustments.
2 lb.s potatoes
1/4 – 1/2 cup olive oil
Preheat oven to 450°.
Rinse potatoes and scrub with a vegetable brush or scrubber.
Cut potatoes into wedges or thick slices. Start by cutting potato in half, lengthwise. Place the potato cut side own and cut into slices (vertical cuts) or wedges (angled cuts) To be honest, you could also cut the potatoes into large cubes. Baby potatoes could be cut into halves or quarters. Just cut them all the same, OK?
Pat potatoes dry with paper towels and place in very large bowl.
Drizzle oil over potatoes and toss to coat.
Add salt and pepper and toss again.
Arrange on foil-lined baking tray in single layer and bake for 20 minutes.
Remove pan from oven and flip potatoes over. Return to oven and bake another 20 minutes or until nicely browned and sizzling.
Season with a bit more salt and possible pepper, then serve immediately.
There are two easy ways to add garlic to the program. You can sprinkle garlic powder over the potatoes along with the salt and pepper. Or, you can add crushed or minced garlic to the oil and let them get happy for a bit before drizzling over the wedges.
Replace the salt and pepper with one packet of Ranch dressing/seasoning mix for two pounds of potatoes.
Obviously, you won’t serve these with spaghetti, but they’ll go very well with your meatball sub.
Replace salt and pepper with one packet of Italian dressing/seasoning mix for two pounds of potatoes.
Alternatively, you can use garlic powder, oregano and basil to taste to create your own version.
Omit the (black) pepper and replace with paprika and cayenne and/or red pepper flakes. Whenever I do these, I also use some garlic.
Use these spices instead of just salt and pepper.
1/2 teaspoon dried crushed rosemary
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon salt
Prepare following the Basic or Garlic methods. As soon as the potatoes come out of the oven, sprinkle a generous amount of malt vinegar over them. Serve immediately.
This one is a bit different, in that you’re going to add some liquid to the mix. For two pounds of potatoes, you will need:
1 cup olive oil
4 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
2 tablespoons dried oregano
2 teaspoons dried parsley
Salt and pepper
1/3 cup (or more) chicken or vegetable broth, or water
Preheat oven to 420°. (NOT 450 as above)
In a small bowl combine olive oil, lemon juice, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano and parsley. Let it all get happy while you cut the potatoes.
In a very large bowl, toss potatoes with 1/2 of the marinate mixture.
Place potatoes on foil lined baking sheet in single layer. Season wit generous portion of salt and pepper.
Bake potatoes for 30-40 minutes, until nice golden brown crust has formed. Remove from oven and flip all potatoes. If necessary, add some more broth or water to the pan if it’s dry or almost dry. Continue to bake for another 30-40 minutes, until second side has nice golden crust.
Remove from oven and place potatoes on serving platter. Drizzle remaining marinate over the top, and garnish with some fresh Italian parsley if you have any lying around.
You can always add some bacon bits to pretty much any recipe above to make it even more Manlier.
I know a lot of folks who like to sprinkle some Parmesan over the potatoes just before serving. Try it!
One other neat idea I like to use: For all but the Greek and Ranch versions, try adding a tablespoon or two of balsamic vinegar to the oil and spices. It adds a really nice kick!
Finally, here’s a way to learn more about spices. Make the basic recipe, but add ONE spice, such as thyme, oregano or marjoram. Proceed as usual. The resulting potatoes will give you a chance to see how that spice tastes once cooked. then you can try combinations. One day a few years back, a friend and I took this to extremes. We coated the wedges in oil, the laid them out on the baking sheet. We then sprinkled spices by hand, keeping a “map” of which wedges got which spices. It was a ton of fun, and we learned a lot!
You now have enough variations to keep you going for quite a while. Try your hand at as many as strike your fancy. Then make sure to come back and let me know how it went, OK? And, really…
Play with your food!
Did you like this recipe? What recipes would you like to learn? Leave me a comment and tell me your thoughts! (And don’t forget to LIKE this post!) Share it using the tiles below.