A few years ago, my sister and her husband invited me to a Spanish restaurant in New Jersey for dinner. I really don’t like leaving the city, but they promised me it would be well worth it.
I got my Visa, filled the car with gas and punched in the restaurant’s address into Paula, my GPS navigation device. All I kept thinking was “Paula, don’t fail me now!” Most of the food seemed pretty typical, except for these amazing roasted potatoes. I couldn’t get enough of them! I asked our waiter what was in them, and the only ingredient he would disclose was “garlic.” Undeterred, I asked another waiter and he said “mayonnaise.” Seems my fellow hombres at this lovely establishment didn’t think I could guess it was a Spanish version of aioli.
Because of global warming, the horrible economy and my total fear of going below 59th Street, I’ve been pressed to come up with my own version. No trip to Jersey required! Enjoy!
Spanish Roasted Potato Salad
1 pound small potatoes (white or red — your choice)
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
4 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Cut the potatoes in half or quarters into a bowl. Add 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, 1 teaspoon of salt and the pepper. Mix and put on a baking sheet in a single layer. Bake the potatoes for 40 minutes, flipping twice during baking. Make sure they turn a nice golden brown. Take out of the oven and allow to cool.
In a bowl, combine 1/2 teaspoon of salt, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, the chopped garlic, mayonnaise, lemon juice and Dijon mustard. Mix and pour over the cooled potatoes.
Serves 3-4 as a side dish.
Petrit Husenaj is a writer based in New York City and the creator of the food blog My Social Chef.