No-one cooks potatoes better than a northerner. You’re in luck: not only am I from Manchester, I’m also the biggest potato addict you’ll meet. Trust me when I say THESE ARE THE BEST roasties you’ll make.
Time to Cook
1 cup of olive oil
2 tablespoons of flour
2 teaspoons of season all or red salt
4 dollops of vegan butter
- Preheat your oven to 180 degrees.
- Once you’ve peeled your potatoes, cut them into really big chunks. I’m talking, 1-2 roast potatoes per potato. The bigger, the better. These beasts should take up a quarter of your plate.
- Parboil them for around 15 minutes, until they’re halfway cooked. You don’t want they to be cooked to the point of being able to mash them, otherwise they’ll fall apart.
- Drain them and sprinkle half your flour and red salt over them. You want them coated in the mixture – but if you stir them, they’ll probably break up. So gently pour them into another bowl, and pour the rest of your mixture on the side of the potatoes that aren’t yet coated. Tip them back into the pan, then back into the bowl, then back again (you catch my drift) until they’re coated. The flour will give them a light batter when cooked.
- In your roasting dish which has plenty of oil in it (I’m talking, at least a cup – maybe even 2, if you’ve got a big dish), position your potatoes LOVINGLY. Turn them over with a spoon to get them coated all round.
- Spoon knobs of butter around the dish — then put everything in the oven.
- The next bit is very important. Check them EVERY 20 MINUTES. You want to turn them over, each time. These potatoes are like puppies. The more love they give you, the more they’ll love you back.
- After about 1.5 hours of roasting, they should be just perfect.
I can gobble up an entire bowl of this all by itself. The smoky, crunchy garlic scattered over the top adds a whole new dimension to the buttery rice — and the avocado, stirred through, makes it extra creamy.
Time to Cook
1 cup of basmati rice (not easy-cook!)
1/2 an avocado
4 cloves of garlic
2 dried chillis
1/2 fresh red chilli
1 tablespoon of vegan butter
A generous glug of olive oil
- Chop your half red chilli super fine and mince 2 of your cloves of garlic. Fry them in your vegan butter along with the cup of rice. There’s no need to rinse the rice beforehand: you want all that starch for this.
2. Careful not to burn yourself, put the tip of your finger on the top of the rice. Fill it up with water, so it meets the first crease in your finger. Bring it to the boil. The second it starts bubbling, move it onto a hob with a medium heat. Give everything a quick stir, then put the lid on, and let it simmer until the water has evaporated – around 10 minutes. Avoid taking off the lid and stirring things around. You don’t want the rice to break up.
3. Slice your other 2 garlic cloves into slithers and chop your shallots into delicate rings. Fry your garlic along with your shallots and dried red chillis in the generous glug of olive oil. The juice of the onion should stop your garlic from burning and the dried chillis should puff up and develop a deeper colour. When everything starts to caramelise, take it off the heat and leave it to the side. You can throw away the dried chilli, or use it as a garnish.
4. In a bowl, mush up your half avocado.
5. By now, your rice should hopefully be done. There’s no need to drain it, if it’s absorbed the water. Give it a taste to make sure it’s got a bit of bite to the rice. Drop it into a bowl and stir through with the mixed avocado.
6. Add salt to taste (a teaspoon or two — salt is your friend, when cooking rice!).
7. Finally, garnish with your fried shallots and garlic. Eat away!