It all started with an Italian restaurant… I feel like quite a few of my stories and recipes begin with that line. The first time I tasted these golden cubes, crispy with olive oil, and scented with rosemary, I knew they had a permanent place in my life. So, for the last decade I’ve been making these potatoes and everyone loves them – and I mean everyone! I’ve made so many changes along the way, the only thing that’s still the same is the ingredients – the texture and flavor however have evolved to new heights!
The restaurant where we first enjoyed these potatoes doesn’t give out recipes, so all I had to work with is that the originals were oven roasted. Funny thing is, I rarely use the oven anymore for these potatoes because I found that a skillet cooks up a better texture. Something about pan frying vs. oven frying produces a moisture potato with more crispy edges – so yeah… obviously we have to go with the more crispy edges thing.
If you’re feeding a crowd you can do 1 of 2 things:
1. double the recipe and use two skillets
2. or roast them in the oven for a ‘hands free’ option – which is nice if you’re entertaining
My favorite potato for this recipe is Yukon Gold, but any red potato will work as well. Russets produce a slightly drier end product so I don’t recommend them.
To cube a potato, cut it into 4 slices lengthwise. If your potatoes are super huge, you’ll need to make more slices to keep the cubes at around 1/2″.
Lay each potato half on the flat face and make 4 cuts across the top, again cutting lengthwise.
Cut across the slices to create potato cubes around 1/2″. Don’t worry too much about the potato cubes being slightly uneven – the little pieces get cooked into crispy bits.
Remove the rosemary leaves from the tough stems and roughly chop it. I like to add half the rosemary at the beginning of the cooking time, and the other half after 15 minutes of cooking for the best flavor.
With any simple recipe, the key is in the ingredients. Try to find the best quality potatoes, (farmer’s market is always a good option) good fruity olive oil, and the coarse sea salt is an absolute must because the results aren’t the same with a ground sea salt! Something about the coarse sea salt sort of melts into the potatoes as they cook leaving behind a few bits of salt to crunch into – simply delicious!
I really hope you enjoy these as much as we do – there’s rarely a big family dinner or breakfast for that matter that doesn’t include these potatoes, and it’s about time I wrote down the recipe!
- 2½ pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, cut into ½'" cubes
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 Tablespoon coarse Celtic gray sea salt - or sea salt to taste
- 2 Teaspoons coarsely chopped fresh rosemary
- Preheat a cast iron skillet oven medium high heat. I used a 9" skillet because it's the biggest one I have, but a slightly bigger skillet is easier to manage and will cook the potatoes faster.
- Place the cubed potatoes, olive oil, sea salt, and half the chopped rosemary in the skillet, and cook over medium high heat for about 15 minutes. Use a metal spatula to flip the potatoes whenever the bottom layer turns brown and crispy.
- After about 15 minutes, turn the heat down to medium. If the pan starts smoking before the 15 minutes is up, turn the heat down sooner.
- Add the rest of the rosemary and continue to cook over medium heat turning when brown edges appear on the bottom layer, until the potatoes are tender with crispy brown edges - about 25 minutes for a 9" pan.
- Serve immediately.
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