Rosemary-Roasted Potatoes

One technique that works for any root—and many other—vegetables.
TIME 1 to 1¼ hours, somewhat unattended
MAKES 4 servings
2 pounds any potatoes
2 tablespoons olive oil, or more as needed
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary or 1 teaspoon dried

1 Heat the oven to 400°F. Scrub and rinse the potatoes well and peel them if you like. Cut them into 1- to 2-inch chunks, put them on a baking sheet, and toss them with the oil and a sprinkling of salt and pepper. If they’re too crowded, consider using 2 pans.

2 Put the potatoes in the oven and roast without stirring for 20 minutes, then check. If the potatoes release easily from the pan, stir or turn the pieces with tongs. If they look dry and are sticking to the pan, drizzle with 1 tablespoon more oil. Continue roasting, stirring or turning the potatoes once, until they’re golden but still not tender all the way through, another 20 minutes or so. Stir in the rosemary, then return the pan to the oven to finish cooking.

3 The potatoes are done when they’re crisp on the outside and tender inside (a sharp, thin-bladed knife will easily pierce the center of one piece); this will take another 20 to 40 minutes depending on the type of potato and size of the chunks.

4 Remove the potatoes from the oven, taste, and adjust the seasoning with salt or pepper. Serve hot, warm, or at room temperature.

  • Garlic-Roasted Potatoes: Substitute 1 tablespoon (or more) minced garlic for the rosemary—or add it along with the herb.

  • You can roast any type of potato, but the results will be slightly different for each: Waxy potatoes (like red or white ones) get crisp on the outside and creamy on the inside; starchy potatoes (like the big dark brown russets you use for baking) turn quite dark and get pleasantly mealy inside; all-purpose potatoes (like the popular Yukon Gold variety) are somewhere in between.
  • Peeled potatoes give you more crisp edges. Unpeeled will have a more rustic look and taste. Try both ways and see which you like.
  • Root vegetables—carrots, celery root, sweet potatoes, and so on—are the most common for roasting. But you can even use this recipe for things you might not expect, like celery, eggplant, mushrooms, or even sturdy greens like kale. Chop them into large pieces and roast them as described here; start checking greens or tender vegetables after 10 minutes.

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