We are hosting our gourmet group this weekend. It was actually the only weekend all summer long that we could gather five couples on the same day and it will be a fun day to host a party - July 4. There will be sparklers, grilled steaks and a very summery menu befitting the day.
One of the side dishes we will offer I found from the weekly column of a local chef, Sanford D'Amato, who is a James Beard award winner and the owner of one of the finest restaurants in Milwaukee - Sanford. My husband surprised me with a 25th wedding anniversary party at Sanford with all our closest friends in attendance. A fun and delicious evening! I also had the pleasure of taking French conversation classes with Sandy D'Amato and his wife, Angie, years ago when they were preparing to take a trip to France. Friendly and nice :) His column reflects his witty personality.
The recipe for sauteed potatoes that I found in D'Amato's column sounded like it would be the perfect compliment to the steaks we plan on serving. I did a little 'test run' tonight and they are wonderful! So simple and yet so flavorful.
The potatoes are par-boiled and then sauteed in a very hot pan in a single layer until crisy. Green onions and garlic are added during the last two minutes and the parsley added during the last minute.
Sautéed Potatoes with Green Onions and ParsleyRecipe Courtesy of Sanford D’Amato
Makes 4 to 6 side dishes
2 pounds red potatoes), quartered (unpeeled)
1 ½ tablespoons kosher salt
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 bunch green onions (6 to 7), cut diagonally into ½ -inch slices
2 large cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
1 cup packed Italian parsley leaves (about 1 ounce), cleaned and leaves cut in half
In large pot, cover potatoes with water. Add the salt and bring to a boil, then cook at a low boil 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender but not falling apart. Drain and let cool about 8 minutes or until just cool enough to handle. Slightly crush each potato wedge with your hand to make them about ¾ to 1 inch thick. (I omitted this step as my potato were small and the quarters were only an inch thick)
Place sauté pan (or pans)over high heat. Pans should be large enough to hold potatoes in one layer without crowding. Place oil in pan or divide between two pans and, when oil is hot, add potatoes. Sauté without disturbing for 2 to 4 minutes until potatoes are nicely golden on bottom.
Season with salt and pepper and start turning potatoes over to brown all of them evenly so they are very crisp and golden - 10 to 12 minutes total. Lower heat if potatoes are browning too fast.
When potatoes are golden and crisp, add green onions and garlic, sauté about 1 ½ to 2 minutes.
Add parsley to potatoes and sauté 1 minute, stirring.
*Did you know that the word 'spud' comes from the digging of soil (or a hole) prior to the planting of potatoes? The word is of unknown origin and was originally used as a term for a short knife or dagger, probably related to Dutch spyd (circa 1440). The word spud traces back to the 16th century. It subsequently transferred over to a variety of digging tools. Around 1845 it transferred to the tuber itself.
The origins of "spud" has erroneously been attributed to a 19th century activist group dedicated to keeping the potato out of Britain, calling itself The Society for the Prevention of an Unwholesome Diet.