Their loose, delicate young skins provide lots of flavour. Boil to waxy tenderness, anoint with butter, salt and shredded mint – a salute to spring.
Storage & prep
Will keep for about a week
Storage: Most potatoes like to be kept dirty, dark and cool, with the exception of loose-skinned new potatoes. Their un-fixed skins mean that they are best kept in the fridge and used within a week.
Prep: New potatoes’ loose, young skins provide much of the potato’s flavour and nutrition, so we wouldn’t peel these. Just give them a gentle scrub in cold water – their flaky little skins may look tatty, but better taste over appearance. Most recipes require keeping new potatoes whole, only halving or quartering them if they’re particularly big.
They should only take 10-15 mins to boil in a pan of salted water; some bay and split garlic cloves would be a welcome addition to the pan. You can roast them well from raw, but they will be all the more fluffy and crisp for being parboiled first. If the weather permits, try wrapping a handful of washed and seasoned potatoes in foil and cooking in the glowing embers of a BBQ or campfire for 20 mins or so.
Crushed: Beloved by restaurants the world over, it will hide the sins of an over cooked spud. Warm your potatoes in a pan with some olive oil. Press them against the side of the pan with a spoon to break them apart. You are not trying to fry them but a little colour won’t hurt. When warm they will welcome some butter or cream and plenty of freshly chopped herbs. A good alternative to mash as a pie topping, the rough texture and inclusion of the skins gives you plenty of nice edges to brown and crisp.
Potato cakes: Simply grate some spuds, season well and press into flat hockey-puck-sized discs. Fry in oil or butter until crispy and brown on both sides. You can call this a rosti or hashbrown; serve it as part of a fry-up or with a poached egg and some smoked salmon. A small amount of grated onion in the mix will make it all the more savoury.
Fried: Chop into cubes or flat slices and sauté on a medium heat until hot and crispy. Try throwing with some sea salt, dried chilli, chopped rosemary and a little lemon zest at the end. Perfect with cold cuts, a light omelette or partnered with a strong aioli and a glass of something ice cold.
New potatoes recipe
Samphire & new potato frittata
Samphire is often associated with fish, as it naturally grows on the seashore, in estuaries or marshland, but there's no reason why vegetarians can't enjoy its salty sweetness. It pairs well with new potatoes and herbs; we've used aromatic basil and punchy chives. Season the dish carefully with any extra salt, as samphire has quite a salty taste. Resting the frittata for a few minutes will allow it to set properly, making slicing it easier; egg dishes like this are always better warm rather than piping hot.
Serves 2 - 40 min
New potatoes work well with:
Acid – lemon, pickles, vinegar
Alliums – garlic, onions, spring onions
Bacon and pancetta
Cream, crème fraîche, soured cream, etc.
Fish – oily, smoked, white
Herbs, especially chives, dill, mint, parsley
Salty things – anchovies, blue cheese, capers, olives