Saturday, June 18, 2011

Oven Fries a la Nicole

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I mentioned this recipe when I wrote about Joie de Vivre, and this week I finally made these potatoes. You may know that I love potatoes. They are my top favorite food. And these looked so appealing in the book photograph that I just knew they would be great. And they were!

Oven Fries a la Nicole

My cousin Nicole is famous for her oven fries. These are a great substitute for deep-fried potatoes and everyone adores this dish. I always use Yukon gold potatoes for this recipe. Their taste and texture really make a difference in this simple dish. This serves 4.

10 cloves garlic, 5 smashed and 5 whole
3/4 cup olive oil
salt and pepper
Herbes de Provence (thyme, bay, rosemary, oregano)
6 Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and kept in water to preserve color

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Mix the garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper, and herbes de Provence in a bowl.
Cut peeled potatoes in half lengthwise and make 3 to 4 wedges from each half.
Put potatoes in the bowl with olive oil mixture and toss to coat.
Arrange potato wedges on a sheet pan one by one so that the point of each wedge faces up and the rounded part is on the pan.
Cook in oven until tender and brown, about 30 to 35 minutes.

Well, first off, I had to look up what smashed garlic meant. First peel the clove. Then you take the flat side of your knife and using the heel of your hand, smash it down on the garlic clove. Then chop it roughly and use the knife again to press it firmly onto the cutting board and move it back and forth until you have sort of a mashed paste. I stopped before making the 'mashed paste.'

I didn't have bay or oregano, so used just thyme and rosemary. I used 1/2 cup olive oil instead of 3/4 which just seemed too much. I probably could have used even a bit less than 1/2 cup.

I used a 9x13 pan lightly greased with cooking spray.

I will try this with Yukon potatoes when I have them. This time I used what was in the house, some lovely red potatoes, which worked great.

As for the wedges, I've learned over time that roasted potatoes are best when the pieces are smaller.

Otherwise, they seem to take forever to cook. As it was, even with the smaller pieces, they took an hour to brown nicely.

These are some of the best potatoes I've ever tasted! They really are a good substiture for french fries. We've recently given up our fryer because, well, we ate them too often. They are irresistible to me (and to Tom). Happily, I've found this recipe which is almost as good, and much better for us. And don't these potatoes look absolutely wonderful?!


  1. Nan, these look really good. Hubby doesn't do well with or even like garlic very much, but I suppose it could be left out. I am needing to find better ways to cook these days and baking fries seems a good idea.

  2. I'm a great lover of potatoes too so I will definitely be trying these. I especially like your notes after the recipe. I thought 3/4 cup of oil seemed like a lot too. I'm going to give this a try this week.

  3. They look fantastic! Perfectly browned and crisp. Perfect.

  4. Hi!
    I love potatoes in any shape or form. They are a big hit here. I'll have to give this recipe a try. Have a great day!

    Just Books

  5. oh, I love all the roasty, crispy bits..

  6. Nan, those potatoes look awesome!!

  7. This sound delicious! I adore potatoes-especially oven roasted. I will give these a try!

  8. Those look yummy! You might also like these:

    We make them a lot in the summer. Rather than roast them in the oven, my husband cooks them in a grate pan on the grill while he's grilling chicken. The timing works out just about right.

    I suspect your recipe would work well on the grill, too -- I may try that next time for some variety.

  9. I love oven fries-great selection of herbs.

  10. Last weekend, we made back of lamb and roast spuds; I love potatoes, too, and my preferred way of eating them is either as a mash with just the right amount of butter and muscat in it, or made in the oven, similar to your recipe. I use olive oil, oregano and/or rosemary, salt and pepper, and like you, I cut them into relatively small pieces.

  11. yes, you are right, the potatoes look absolutely wonderful. Fresh garlic will be in my farmers' market very, very soon. Must consider making these over the summer.

  12. I just love oven baked potatoes! Other roasted root veggies as well btw.

  13. I'm with you on loving potatoes :)
    These sound yummy, and I'm very appreciative of any recipe that is a good substitute for the fries my husband and daughter love so much.

  14. Oh, I am so sorry for your fellow, Kay. Garlic is probably my second favorite food. So this dish is perfect. I make other roasted potatoes that don't have it that are also excellent.

    Margot, you'll love 'em! If you have a minute come and tell me how you made them, and how you liked them.

    Carol, yes, it's that browning that is wonderful -of the potatoes and the garlic. Yum.

    Sherrie, they are so good!

    Caite, me, too!

    Sherri, they are!

    Peaceful Reader, they are delcious!

    Joy, I think they would work on the grill just great!

    Esme, the herbs were just right.

    Librarian, great things, potatoes!!

    Beth, there is nothing like fresh garlic!

    Gnoe, I love them roasted or baked or mashed. :<)

    The book girl, they really are almost as good.

  15. These look so good
    and it seems I can smell
    there aroma over the miles and here in the woods :)

  16. I often do similar oven fries. Everyone loves them, but I am going to have to try this more adventurous version.

  17. A perfect dish for you, Ernestine. You can increase or decrease depending how many you are cooking for.

    Pat, these were really great! All that garlic made them special.

  18. YUM!!! Like Kay's hubby, Rod doesn't do well with garlic either. Good idea to cut the potatoes into smaller pieces. These will be quite good with burgers or steak. Definitely going to try your recipe.

  19. Les, I'm sorry for Rod, too. :<(

  20. If you smash the garlic before you peel it it makes it easlier to peel. :)

  21. Lesley, I have tried that but it seems less messy if I peel it first. I am amazed, amazed that you wrote. I have been thinking about you lately and was going to try the old email to get in touch with you.

  22. YOur potatoes look yummy. I find it hard to leave them in the oven long enough to crisp. I want to get eating them.

  23. My girls will love those - I'm going to try that recipe.

  24. Heather, I know just what you mean, but I make myself wait because I love those crispy potatoes!


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