Roasted Potatoes with Garlic and Thyme

August 4, 2006

Roasted Potatoes with Garlic and Thyme

This type of roasting works particularly well with Red LaSodas, due to their fine, creamy texture and moderate moisture content.

Preheat the oven to 400oF. Scrub the potatoes well in water and drain them. Choose a shallow baking dish or pan just large enough to hold the potatoes in a single layer. Toss the potatoes in the pan with olive oil; heads of garlic separated into cloves, peeled or not, as you prefer; sprigs of thyme or winter savory; and a splash of water. Season with salt and pepper.

Tightly cover the baking pan with aluminum foil and put in the middle of the oven. After 40 minutes, carefully lift one corner of the foil and check the potatoes for doneness. They should pierce easily with a small knife. If the potatoes are not tender, replace the foil and continue to roast until they are done. When they are, take them out of the oven and loosen the foil to allow the steam to escape. They can be kept warm for a few minutes before serving.

Potatoes can also be roasted in the fireplace or in the charcoal fire of a grill. Toss the potatoes with the garlic, seasonings, and water, as above, and seal them up tightly inside packets carefully folded out of three sheets of aluminum foil layered together, holding potatoes and garlic in a single, evenly thick layer. Roast the packets under coals of a fire that are dusty white all over but still glowing red in the center. Rake out the coals into a layer about 1 inch thick, place the packet on top, and then spread a light dusting of coals over the top.

The time they take to roast will depend on the heat of the embers, but 40 minutes to 1 hour is usually about right. Turn the packet over every 15 minutes or so, replenishing the coals underneath and on top as needed. When they are done, the potatoes will be soft throughout and lightly browned all over.

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