Wednesday, 19 December 2007

Cheating at Roasties

Regular visitors to The Distracted Housewife might recall my rather pathetic inability to make roast potatoes which are anything like as good as those made by my Mum or my husband. When I received some vouchers to try out the new McCain Roast Potatoes Basted in Goose Fat, I leapt at the chance. Promising "roast potato unparalleled golden crunch...succulent fluffiness in the centre", how could I resist?

The potatoes were easy enough to cook - 40 minutes at 210°c in my fan oven (they apparently take 10-20 minutes longer in a conventional oven, and need the higher temperature of 240°c. In their frozen state, they were spattered with hard white streaks of fat, so that seemed encouraging. I turned them twice during cooking, but found this quite difficult. The rather small tray was quite crowded with decent-sized chunks of potato (definitely a good thing), so manoeuvring my tongs to get hold of them was a little tricky (not so good).

Once cooked, the potatoes were an appetising golden brown and had a crisp, crunchy exterior. The inside was very soft, so soft and smooth that it put me in mind of those potato croquettes my brother and I used to eat as children. In fact the flavour was similar too; they did taste 'processed' rather than home-made, but not in an altogether unpleasant way; they were very enjoyable. I would think of them as an alternative to roast potatoes, not a substitute for them (if that makes any sense to you). I think a carton might find its way into the freezer as a back up, for a quick Sunday dinner when Hubby's at work and I'm on my own with the children. Roast a small joint, two or three chicken legs (or even a poussin if I can get one), put these potatoes in the oven alongside and cook some veggies. That would keep the spirit of Sunday dinner without quite such a production number when we are just three. It would make a change from my usual roast chicken with baked potatoes and greens, and a change is as good as a rest, you know what they say. It's all good...

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