A few weeks ago now, I made a very impulsive purchase—I found two Jamie Oliver cookbooks on sale for $15 each. I had to get them! Ever since, I’ve been trying all sorts of new recipes. I love his emphasis on using fresh, organic, and locally sourced produce and meats, as well as making things from scratch. This recipe is from Cook with Jamie, though I’ve well and truly altered it. Certainly not because I can do better, but because I just like being adventurous now and then!
Jamie Oliver’s version of this recipe first drew me because of its inclusion of celery leaves. I had just bought a giant head of celery that had these beautifully lush leaves—it broke my heart a little bit to think about just tossing them in the bin. Celery has such a delicate flavour that it’s difficult to find recipes that do it justice—its leaves are a bit tangier than the stalks, fortunately, and help to cut through the sticky potato flavour in this dish.
Even though this is just potatoes, this is surprisingly tasty on its own. Serve as a part of a balanced meal, but don’t underestimate how easily these potato morsels get gobbled down!
Cooking time: 45 minutes
- 10-12 baby potatoes (about 2 lbs), peeled and quartered
- 1/2 bottle of beer *
- 1/4 c white wine *
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp each butter and olive oil
- 1 tsp plain flour
- 1 tbsp sugar
- a few sprigs fresh thyme, leaves removed from stalks
- large handful fresh celery leaves, chopped (or watercress)
Slowly fry the onion and garlic in the butter and oil, until soft and translucently golden. Add half of the fresh thyme, and a touch of salt and pepper. Add potatoes and beer and wine, and cover to simmer until potatoes are cooked through and slightly mushy. (* You can use water instead of the beer and wine, or all beer and no wine. This recipe needs just less than a pint of liquid total.) If the potatoes are sticking to the bottom of the pot before cooking through, add water as necessary and turn down the temperature. When liquid has mostly boiled off, sprinkle about 1 tsp flour and 1 tbsp sugar over the whole mixture.
The potatoes are done when cooked through, and going golden and mushy. They should look almost as if they’ve been battered. Stir the remaining thyme in, and add salt and pepper to taste. Serve with celery leaves on top.