new potatoes baked in a bag recipe image

Print new potatoes baked in a bag

‘In a bag’, or ‘en papillote’ if you’re feeling fancy, is a classic way of cooking all sorts of ingredients. With new potatoes you end up in a middle ground between roasted and steamed. We serve these all summer in the Field Kitchen, torn open at the table. To make the bag, take a large square of baking parchment and fold it in half. Fold three of the sides over firmly two or three times and secure with a couple of staples, leaving an opening at the top. You can comfortably cook up to about 600g of potatoes in one bag before it becomes too crowded and the heat distribution is affected, but there’s no reason you can’t make smaller bags to serve one to each person.

Ingredients

  • 600g new potatoes
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt & pepper

Method

  1. Heat the oven to 200°C/Gas 6. Cut the potatoes into pieces no bigger than 3–4cm (in half if small). While still wet, mix them in a bowl with the oil and a generous seasoning of salt and pepper. Tip the potatoes into the bag with all the oil and water from the bowl.
  2. Pop in the bay leaf and any other flavourings (see overleaf). Fold the top of the bag over two or three times and secure with three staples, one in each corner and one in the middle.
  3. Sit the parcel on a baking tray and bake in the oven for about 40 minutes. To test, push down on the corner of the bag – a potato should crush under a little pressure. To serve, flip into a large serving bowl and tear open the top of the bag. Keep track of the staples!

Cooks notes

Other ideas for what to put in your papillote of potatoes * Butter and herbs Mix in 50g of diced butter and a few sprigs of thyme, rosemary, oregano and/or sage. * Lemon and garlic Peel 3 generous strips of peel from a lemon. Crush 3 unpeeled garlic cloves with the heel of your hand. Mix the peel and garlic with the potatoes. * Wet garlic/spring onions and wine Trim and finely slice the wet garlic or spring onions and add to the potatoes along with about 80ml white wine or vermouth and 25g diced butter. * Mushrooms and garlic Finely slice 3 large Portobello mushrooms or 200g chestnut mushrooms. Fry quickly over a high heat in 1 tablespoon of oil or butter until starting to darken. Add to the potatoes with 2 lightly crushed garlic cloves and a thyme sprig. You could also add a few drops of truffle oil at the end if you’re feeling posh. * Fennel and orange Trim and finely slice a bulb of fennel. Toast and coarsely crush a teaspoon of fennel seeds. Peel 2 large strips of peel from an orange. Mix the fennel, fennel seeds and orange peel strips into the potatoes, along with a shot of aniseed liquor e.g. Pernod or Pastis if you have any to hand. You could also add a handful of chopped tarragon leaves just before serving. "
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