Sunday, August 3, 2008

recipe: roasted potatoes on the grill

In a rare moment of clairvoyance, I invented this recipe in an effort to enjoy roasted potatoes without turning on the oven. Root vegetables taste great (and are inexpensive) year around, but it can be a challenge to prepare them during the summer, as the kitchen can become a real sweat lodge. I've listed the ingredients and technique below, but you'll quickly realize that a cave person likely came to the same conclusion. This recipe begs for variation and experimentation. Go wild.


  • 2.5 pounds potatoes, scrubbed and cut into 1-2 inch pieces (I used Yukon golds, but any variety should be fine)
  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic, lightly smashed
  • chopped leaves of one rosemary sprig
  • olive oil
  • black pepper
  • kosher salt
  1. Light a chimney-load of briquettes. While the coals are heating up, locate a deep, heavy roasting pan (see picture) that can handle high heat.
  2. Coat the bottom of the pan with olive oil - this will keep the potatoes from sticking
  3. Combine all of the ingredients in the pan, drizzle with more oil, and toss to evenly distribute oil, herbs, salt, and pepper. Cover it with tin foil.
  4. Once charcoal is ready, dump it onto one side of your grill - make sure it's relatively flat and not heaped in a pile.
  5. Place the pan on the grill grate directly over the coals and cover grill. Let it cook for 10-15 minutes. The goal of this step is to fry the potatoes, so you should hear a sizzling sound after a few minutes of cooking.
  6. Check the potatoes by lifting the tin foil - if the bottom layer is browning, use a spatula to toss them. Replace foil and continue frying for 5-10 more minutes.
  7. Have a drink.
  8. Once you get a nice brown color on most of the potatoes, slide the pan to the cool side of the grill - cook, covered, for at least another 10-20 minutes, or until the potatoes are fully roasted and tender.
  9. Have another drink, and enjoy your effortless grilling mastery.
There are several beautiful elements to this recipe, the main one being that you don't really have to pay close attention to it (as long as you know when they're browned and not burned). And you can leave the pan on the cool side of the grill for quite a while, which is especially helpful if you're going to use the hot coals for the rest of your meal, be it vegetables, hamburgers, sausages, etc.

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