Nigella’s Roast Potatoes

The craze all over the UK: Nigella’s perfect roast potatoes for Christmas. So perfect that the UK run out of goose fat … and this is where the Belgian goose fat came in to the rescue. I know Christmas is over (Merry Christmas btw) and that heavy eating is momentarily stopped – till we hit New Year’s Dinner. Trust me though, these are delicious potatoes. Everyone will fight for seconds. A foolproof recipe from the goddess of cooking herself.

Perfect Roast Potatoes

2½kg potatoes
2 tbsp semolina flour (alternatively, use polenta)
2 x 320g jars goose fat

Preheat the oven to the hottest possible temperature.
Peel the potatoes, and cut them into chunky bits.
Place the potatoes into salted cold water in a saucepan, and bring them to a boil. Boil the potatoes for 4 minutes. Drain the excess water from the potatoes using a colander and then tip the potatoes back into the empty saucepan.
Sprinkle the semolina (or polenta) over the top of the potatoes. Hold a lid firmly on top of the pan and shake the potatoes around to coat them well and so that their edges disintegrate or fuzz and blur a little: this facilitates the crunch effect later.
Place the goose fat into a large roasting tin and heat in the oven until very hot. Then carefully place the semolina-coated potatoes into the hot fat and roast the potatoes in the oven for 45 minutes to an hour or until they are darkly golden and crisp, turning them over halfway through cooking.
If the oven is hot enough they probably will not need more than about 25 minutes a side; and it’s better to let them sit in the oven (you can always pour off most of the fat and leave them in the tin) until the very last minute.

(recipe from Nigella Lawson ‘Feast’)

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  • These potatoes were very soggy. Nigella uses too much goose fat!

  • Anonymous

    How hot is hot enough?

  • Anonymous

    Over in my country in Asia, it is difficult to get goose fat. What can i replace it with?

  • Anonymous

    Almost any animal fat can be used. Vegetable fats (other than peanut oil) have relatively low smoke points, but goose fat, duck fat, beef dripping–even chicken fat all do well.

    The fat and the pan *must* be hot when the potatoes go in. You want the sides cooked right away, so that the fat doesn’t soak into them.

    For oven temperature, I aim for 500 F (260 C).

  • Anonymous

    You need a haevy roasting tinn too – preferably cast iron – to hold the heat,otherwise when you put the spuds in, the temperature drops and they aren’t as crispy.

    Thin cheap roasting tins are a waste of time.

  • Anonymous

    Apart from the semolina this method is exactly the same as Delia’s. I couldn’t tell the difference!

  • Anonymous

    Your blog keeps getting better and better! Your older articles are not as good as newer ones you have a lot more creativity and originality now keep it up!