Roasted smashed new potatoes with tomato chutney and cheddarPosted: August 2, 2011
I was tempted to call this ‘roasted smashed new potatoes with red stuff from a jar and cheese’, but that somehow didn’t seem quite as alluring, it didn’t quite set the tone, because I really want you to try this and not skip past it. Let me explain. I’ve been making this with tomato chutney, from a jar (and, for the record, specifically Marks & Spencer’s The Collection Sticky Tomato and Chilli Chutney, which I have been eating with all manner of sandwiches, burgers and anything else I can spread it on for the last week), and strong mature cheddar, which is both the cheese I most often have in the house and also the cheese that, I think, goes best with a good tomato chutney. However, this would work just as well with red pesto and mozzarella, or salsa, again with cheddar or perhaps monterey jack. You get the picture, this is less a recipe and more an enthusiastic suggestion – red stuff from a jar plus cheese. Just a final note about the name. Potatoes cooked this way are generally called smashed, but actually, assuming they are cooked properly, you just want to gently crush them with a blunt instrument – the end of a rolling pin is ideal – to break them up a little, and to burst open the whole potatoes. Taking the smashing too literally will mean you end up with messy mash flecked with skin, and you’ll be picking chunks of potato out of your hair.
This dish can called into service as a side, but works equally respectably as an easy weeknight dinner all by itself. The first time I made this (and this was actually The Other Half’s idea), it was for dinner, and it was so good I immediately made it again. Not the next day, you understand, but straight after eating, so ate it twice in the space of an hour. But for normal eaters, which we are most of the time, the amounts below will feed two for dinner, as is or with salad, or four as a side.
About 600g small new potatoes
Tomato chutney, from a jar (probably about 4 tablespoons, but don’t worry too much about measuring!)
Grated cheddar cheese, perhaps 50g or a couple of handfuls
Preheat the oven to 200C. Bring a pan of well salted water to the boil. Quickly wash the new potatoes, and cut any larger (say above 5cm) ones in half, to make sure they all cook at a similar speed. Carefully tip into the boiling water, and let it come back to the boil. Cook for about 20 minutes, or until the potatoes are just cooked, and tender to the point of a knife. Drain well, and tip them back into the hot empty pan to allow them to dry for a minute. In the pan, gently squash the potatoes with the end of a rolling pin or with the bowl of a wooden spoon, breaking them up a little and bursting open the whole ones (think baby jacket potatoes).
Drizzle a little olive oil into the bottom of a roasting dish and tip in the potatoes. Drizzle with a little more olive oil and sprinkle generously with sea salt. Place in the hot oven and cook for 15 – 20 minutes until the skins are starting to crisp up just a little.
Remove from the oven and, using a small spoon, dot with the chutney, trying to get a little onto each larger potato piece. Sprinkle over the grated cheddar, and return to the hot oven for 3 – 5 minutes until the cheese is melted and bubbling.