Monday, June 15, 2009

another way to make potatoes on the grill

Fried potatoes are delicious and fast, but the thought of heating up the kitchen on a punishingly hot day makes me want to vomit, seriously. Some of you might remember that last summer I posted a recipe for roasted potatoes on the grill. While that version is delicious in its own right, the indirect grilling method requires at least 30 minutes to fully cook the potatoes. In an effort to create a more weeknight friendly version, I developed another recipe inspired by a recent Mark Bittman article about grilling over wood coals, in which he describes how one of his friends uses a cast iron griddle to sear foods over hot coals.

I applied this technique to quartered new potatoes, and the results exceeded my expectations. A screaming hot skillet, combined with the ambient heat from a covered grill, resulted in potatoes that were crispy on the outside, creamy within, and subtly infused with smoky goodness.


  • 2.5 pounds small red new potatoes, quartered or cut into 1 inch pieces (I'm sure other small potatoes would work well)
  • 8 large garlic cloves
  • high quality olive oil (4 tbsp)
  • sea salt
  • black pepper
  • large cast iron skillet
  • a round metal tray, tin foil, or something that will loosely cover the skillet
  • charcoal grill
  1. Ignite a full chimney of charcoal.
  2. While charcoal is heating, pour olive oil into cast iron skillet.
  3. Once coals are hot, pour them in a thick layer over 1/2 of the grill. Place the skillet on the grill grate, cover, and heat until oil is smoking.
  4. Add potatoes, loosely cover the skillet, and cover the grill.
  5. Cook for 10 minutes, then check potatoes for browning.
  6. If the bottom sides are golden brown, flip potatoes with a spatula to brown remaining sides, and add garlic cloves. Cook 10-15 minutes longer.
  7. Once potatoes are brown and crispy, remove from heat, toss w/ salt and pepper, and serve immediately.
*Serves 4 people.
*Cooking time is highly variable based on the amount of coals used, type of skillet, etc., but this is a good guide.

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