When it comes to roasting potatoes for the perfect side dish or main meal, there are a lot of factors to consider. What type of potatoes should you use for roasting? How long will it take them to cook? Should they be peeled first? These are all valid questions that require answers if you want your roast potato experience to be delicious and stress-free.
Fortunately for UK readers, we’ve done the research for you and have collated the information on which kinds of potatoes best suit different roasting recipes so you can get that crispy golden exterior with buttery soft insides every time! So grab some potatoes, preheat your oven and read on as we divulge all our top tips for choosing the best spuds in town!
The Best Potatoes Types For Roasting In The UK
Maris Piper potatoes are a top choice for roast potatoes in the UK. They have a fluffy texture, which results in a crispy exterior and a soft, fluffy interior when roasted. Maris Piper potatoes are widely available in UK supermarkets and are a popular variety for their versatility in various dishes, not just for roasting.
King Edward potatoes have long been considered the gold standard for roasting. Like Maris Piper, they are a floury variety, producing a crunchy outer layer and soft, fluffy centre when roasted. King Edward potatoes are often available in supermarkets across the UK, making them a convenient option for those seeking a reliable choice for roast potatoes.
Desiree potatoes are another great option for roasting, known for their red skin and creamy yellow flesh. These potatoes have a slightly waxy texture, which helps them retain their shape during the roasting process. Desiree potatoes can be found in numerous supermarkets and are a versatile variety suitable for various cooking methods, including boiling and mashing, as well as roasting.
Yukon Gold potatoes are not originally from the UK but have become a popular choice for roasting due to their golden skin and buttery, golden flesh. While they have a slightly waxy texture, they can still yield excellent roast potatoes with a crispy exterior and soft, flavoursome interior. Yukon Gold potatoes are available in many UK supermarkets and can be used in an array of dishes in addition to roasting.
Cara potatoes are a great all-rounder and perform well when roasted. These white-fleshed potatoes have smooth skin and a firm texture, which makes them suitable for a variety of cooking methods, including roasting. Cara potatoes can be found in several UK supermarkets and are a reliable choice for those seeking a versatile potato variety for their kitchen.
In conclusion, Maris Piper, King Edward, Desiree, Yukon Gold, and Cara potatoes are all excellent choices for roasting in the UK. You can easily find these potato varieties in supermarkets, and their distinctive textures and flavours make them well-suited for creating the perfect roast potato.
Preparing Potatoes For Roasting
To Peel or Not to Peel
The question of whether or not to peel the potatoes might be on your mind. While some cooks prefer to keep the skins on for added texture and nutrients, others swear by the smooth and crispy texture of peeled potatoes. Ultimately, the decision is yours! Whichever way you choose, make sure to season your potatoes well before roasting to achieve that golden, crispy exterior and soft, fluffy inside.
When preparing your potatoes for roasting in the UK, it’s important to select the right size and shape to ensure even cooking. Choose potatoes that are medium-sized and fairly even in shape. For the best results, parboil the potatoes in a large pan of salted boiling water for 4-5 minutes or until the outside of the potatoes is starting to soften. This pre-boiling method will help remove excess water from the potato and create that crispy outer coating when roasted.
Drying and Coating
After pre-boiling, it’s crucial to let the parboiled potatoes completely dry before proceeding to the next step. Spread them out on a clean kitchen towel or a wire rack to facilitate the drying process. Once dry, lightly dust the potatoes with flour to create an even crispier roast. Flour is especially helpful for achieving a flaky outer layer on waxy varieties of potatoes.
Oil and Fat Choices
When selecting the best oil or fat for roasting your potatoes, consider these popular options:
- Goose fat: Renowned for achieving the ultimate roasted potato, it imparts a rich and delicious flavour.
- Duck fat: A great alternative to goose fat, it enhances the potato’s crispiness and infuses a flavoursome taste.
- Dripping: Beef dripping or lard can also contribute to a crispy, flavourful roast, which pairs well with traditional British roasts.
- Vegetable oil: A versatile choice that can achieve crispy results, it is suitable for those preferring a less intense flavour or adhering to vegetarian preferences.
- Olive oil: For a healthier option, olive oil can be used for roasting potatoes. It may not result in the crispiest roast but will provide a tasty and light finish.
To ensure even cooking and a crispy finish, preheat the chosen oil or fat in the roasting tin at a high temperature (around 220C/200C fan/gas 7) before adding the potatoes. Coat the potatoes evenly in the hot fat before placing them in the oven. This will seal the outer layer and promote even cooking throughout. Full recipe >> Easy Crispy Roast Potatoes
Remember to stay mindful of your chosen size, shape, and oil or fat when preparing potatoes for roasting in the UK to guarantee the crispiest, most delicious roast.