Kenji’s Secrets for the Crispiest Roast Potatoes | NYT Cooking
Home » Kenji’s Secrets for the Crispiest Roast Potatoes | NYT Cooking

Kenji’s Secrets for the Crispiest Roast Potatoes | NYT Cooking

So I'm going to taste a Little oh wow that's crunchy I don't Know how well you can hear it but it's Pretty Crunchy hey it's Kenji Lopez alt and Today we're going to make my extra Crispy Parmesan crusted roast potatoes I Spent some time few months living in Northern England you know where every Sunday you have the Sunday roast which Is generally sort of overcooked roast Beef Yorkshire pudding and really crispy Potatoes you know and the way the way They're typically done there is you boil Them first until they're kind of soft And then you rough ly toss them so that The exteriors get coated in this kind of Starchy slurry of like you know sort of Like mashed potatoes and then when you Roast them that slurry adds a lot of Surface area to them which makes them Extra crispy so this recipe uses sort of That technique but I kind of try and Maximize the amount of extra surface Area you're adding to the potatoes and You end up with this kind of crispy Shell on the Outside so I have a couple pounds of Rusted potatoes this also works by the Way with uh you know like a Yukon Gold Potato you don't want something super Creamy like a red like a a waxy red Potato won't work quite as well it won't Get very crispy uh but anything ranging

From like a Yukon Gold up into up to a Rust it a Starcher potato is going to Work here I'm going to cut them into Relatively big chunks I've seen similar Recipes to this done with even bigger Chunks of potato so you could take like Say half of a potato if you want comes Out really nice it has a sort of you Know a soft baked potato interior with a Really nice crispy crust so potato cells You know they they resemble these sort Of little rigid balloons all those Little balloons are together with this Carbohydrate glue called pectin and so When you cook vegetables a lot of the Softening that occurs is the breakdown Of that pectin and sort of these cells Becoming unglued the idea here is that We want the exterior of the potatoes to Break down quite a bit so that the cells Can then combine with the butter and Parmesan we're going to add and make This sort of starchy slurry um pectin Breakdown varies by pH level so the more Alkaline in the water that you're Cooking that is the higher the pH of the Water the more pectin is going to break Down in this case case we're measuring Out the water because we're adding a Specific amount of baking soda and salt That baking soda is going to raise the PH of the liquid and so the exterior of The potatoes are going to cook a little Bit faster and they're going to break

Down faster and that's really sort of The key to the recipe here a lot of Extra surface area a lot of extra crunch Now to add flavor to here I'm going to Take a little cheesecloth pouch I know The recipe calls for cheesecloth but I I Don't think I I don't remember the last Time I've had cheesecloth in my kitchen At home and so normally when the thing Calls her cheesecloth I just throw it All in there and then like pick it all Out at the end it doesn't have to be Black pepper garlic rosemary and bay Leaves you know you can kind of Choose Your Own Adventure fresh time would work Really well you can do shallots instead Of garlic basically any sort of Flavoring that you think you would enjoy With potatoes going to wait for this to Come to a boil we'll reduce it to a Simmer they'll cook for about 10 minutes Or so um and then we will be ready to Move on to the next step uh in the Meantime I'm going to pick a little bit Of this Rosemary I don't think this is Even called for in the recipe but I'm Going to pick some extra Rosemary so That we can toss it with the potatoes at The very end okay so what I'm looking For with these potatoes is first of all For the exteriors and you should feel Like there's almost like a kind of Starchy slurry on them but really what We're looking for is for them to be

Cooked through to the center so a knife Should go through I mean you can even Take it out and cut it in half and check Whether it's sort of still raw and Chalky in the center I'd say it's about Another 30 seconds or so and they'll be Done you're just looking for them to be Cooked Through so at this point you have a few Choices at the very minimum what you Want to do is mix these potatoes with Some kind of fat and so in this case I'm Going to use butter melted butter you Could also use something like duck fat Or olive oil or shortening I would avoid Some you know like a really flavorful Fat so I would avoid something like an Extra verion olive oil or like a sesame Oil any any kind of sort of high Temperature safe fat is going to work Here what I'm going to do is I'm going To also add some Parmesan and the idea Here is that as this parmesan cooks with The potatoes it's going to form like a Freo layer you know a layer of like sort Of fried cheese on the outside it's kind Of like the crispy edges of a quesadilla You know definitely not like a necessary Step but I think a nice addition to These potatoes so you see I'm like Relatively roughly tossing these all Right now I do want to sort of encourage That starch on the outside to kind of SLO off a little bit combine with the

Butter and cheese and form that sort of Layer that's going to coat the outsides All right I got a parchment line baking Sheet dump out these potatoes it's okay If they're touching here and there but I Want them to be in a single layer and as Much as possible to sort of get some Space between them so that air can Circulate around in the oven and really Crisp them up on all sides they do Shrink a little bit as they cook if They're touching a little bit that's Okay they will sort of pull away from Each other as they roast you notice After the initial cook I did not add any Extra salt to this to this um that's Because the cheese is quite salty if I Was skipping the cheese um I would toss Them with a little bit of salt in that Bowl and these are going to go into a 400° oven with convection on if you Don't have convection use a 425° oven Instead but if you do have convection It'll get them Brown a little bit faster And they'll get them a little bit Crisper it's been about 20 minutes I Going to go check the potatoes and if They're ready to be flipped we will flip Flip them so we're looking for them to Be sort of a nice blonde gold color here What we want is for them to be this sort Of really nice golden color on all sides This particular recipe with all the Cheese you actually don't want them to

Get too dark because the cheese will get Bitter they're really sticking Huh all right so this thing happened Which I guess sometimes happens in the Life of a recipe developer which is that One of my recipes isn't working for me This always happens when I think you're On camera typically you know parchment Is coated with a silicone layer that Should make it pretty much non-stick but In this case it doesn't seem to be Working quite as well so I don't know What to what to attest that to but I'm Using a fish spatula to gently sort of Prize the potatoes off the bottom here If this happens at home it's not going To ruin your dinner it just might take You a few extra minutes so at this point We're going to flip them over so that They cook evenly so we're flipping them Uh they're going to go right back into The oven uh and they're going to finish Off in probably another 15 to 20 minutes Or So you know as with all cooking you kind Of want to keep your eye on it like you Should never rely just on a timer what We're looking for with these potatoes is This color so like a really nice golden Brown what we don't want is for them to Get much darker than this especially With these parmesan crusted potatoes cuz That protein in that parmesan can Actually tend to get a little bit bitter

Once it starts to over Brown um so this Is the level we're looking for and you Can already see sort of how crispy it Got just a ton of surface area an extra Surface area added to them um both from That starchy slurry and from the Parmesan and that's just going to add Crunch just because I had some of that Extra Rosemary here and I like that Fresh Rosemary flavor I'm going to toss These with a little bit of fresh m Rosemary totally optional most of it's Going to probably fall to the bottom of The bowl Anyway I'm going to taste a Little oh wow that's Crunchy you know at my house we do every Other day is utensils optional day so we Do one meal with utensils and one meal That you're allowed to eat with your Fingers I'm I'm going to do with my Fingers Today cuz I like the feeling of sort of Crunchy things between my Fingers nice and creamy on the inside Really nice and moist but with a really Nice crunchy layer on that outside it's Not a pure parmesan crust it's not a Pure potato crust it's this kind of Slurry of potato and Parmesan so it's Got really nice crunchiness from the Potato starch but then a lot of really Nice flavor from the Parmesan my extra Krispy roast potatoes

With parmesan uh the secret is adding a Little bit of baking soda to the Potatoes as you boil them as well as Adding that little flavor packet some More flavor more texture overall I think It's just the best way to roast potatoes Uh that I've seen but I hope someone Comes up with a better way so I can Learn for this recipe or any one of my New York Times recipes or any one of the Other wonderful New York Times recipes Nyt

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