Provençal Potatoes

Roasted potatoes and chicken is a traditional favorite in France. One of the best fragrances I remember from my time studying there was that from a chicken on a rotisserie spit on the open street. The whole chickens would be roasting, and as the juices fell, they would fall on the potatoes placed below — and an all-too-delicious treat to be enjoyed in moderation would result. The amazing aroma has stayed with me to this day.  

The potatoes in this recipe are lighter than the originals and tossed in olive oil, but they still evoke that same smell I remember. With the fragrant Herbes de Provence, roasted garlic, and onion aromas all at work, everyone questions me when they enter the kitchen: “what exactly are you making that smells so good?” My dad always says the smell of onions cooking perks up anyone’s appetite and I agree with him! 

My tip for this recipe is to get it started as soon as possible. You can place the pan in the oven and forget about it, but the important thing is to start it early enough. For example, once you get into the kitchen, set your oven to 400º F immediately. Then, place the potatoes in the oven, while you prepare the chicken. That way you’ll be sure to be able to enjoy the potatoes as a side dish and not as an early dessert!

Ingredients (Serves 6-8 side dish portions, 12-16 taster size portions)

  • 3 lbs yellow baby potatoes, washed
  • 1/2 medium onion, thinly sliced
  • 7 cloves garlic, skin on, crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes (optional)
  • 1 Tablespoon Herbes de Provence
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground pepper

1. Preheat oven to 400º F. 

2. Place all the ingredients in a large bowl and toss to evenly distribute spices. 

3. Spread out onto an even layer in a roasting pan. Stir to coat potatoes with oil.

4. Put the potatoes in the oven for 15 minutes at 400º F. Then reduce heat to 375º F and cook for 30 to 40 minutes or until potatoes are soft when pierced with fork. Toss the potatoes and onions once or twice during the cooking to coat again with oil which prevents potatoes from drying out. 

5. Once cooked, remove pan from oven and let sit until cooled to room temperature. Sprinkle with fresh thyme, rosemary or chives for garnish. Remove garlic from skins if desired or let guests know skins are still on. Serve with a side of wilted spinach or kale as a great accompaniment. Greens can be roasted in the same pan for a couple of minutes after the potatoes are finished cooking. 

Provençal Potatoes served with Chicken Provençal

Additional information: appropriate for Lacto-Ovo Vegetarian and Vegan diets.

 8 servings
 16 servings

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