I grew up in what I like to refer to as the “Tang era.” That powdery orange drink was all the rage in the 1960’s and 1970’s. It went to the moon so what’s not to love about it, right? Unfortunately, Tang was the tip of the convenience food iceberg that consisted of over processed, industrialized food with colors not found in nature. Why enjoy freshly squeezed orange juice when you could be drinking….Tang!
Convenience food was IN, but on the whole, the food landscape during my childhood was pretty bleak.
Those dark days of cooking were eventually salvaged by the likes of Julia Child and Alice Waters who taught us that cooking could not only be fun, but cooking with natural/real ingredients and a handful of solid techniques could be even better. Thank heavens my mom (who of course gave in to our constant clamoring for Pop Tarts, Snack Pack Pudding and the “Holy Grail” of convenience food: Swanson’s Frozen TV Dinners), regularly prepared dishes from scratch. And her buttery, new potatoes with dill were one of my absolute favorites.
In praise of mom’s Dill Potatoes, I’ve created my own *updated* version here using my latest most favorite smashed and roasted technique for the potatoes and finished with a lemony fresh sauce with honest to goodness real fresh dill and also some chives. Actually the roasted potatoes are outstanding all on their own. Just parboiled for about 20 minutes, then gently pressed (perhaps “smashed” is too violent a term here?), brushed with a little olive oil and finished in a 425° oven for about 30 more minutes:
Tempted as I was to just stop with the plain roasted potatoes, I felt the need to take it to the next level with some of the herbs that were popping up in my spring garden.
With some butter of course, and fresh lemon, all gently melted together just to blend
This simple little sauce can be used on just about anything: Vegetables, chicken, fish, grilled shrimp and pasta. You can also vary the herbs based on what you have available. Any delicate herb, like parsley, basil, tarragon, chervil, etc will add a uniqueness to the sauce.
As the French say “master a good butter sauce and you’ve conquered the culinary world.”
Smash Roasted New Potatoes with Lemony Herb Butter Sauce
- 2 # red skinned potatoes, scrubbed and left whole
- 1/8 cup + 1 TBS olive oil
- Kosher salt and cracked black pepper
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter
- Chopped fresh dill and chives (about 1/4 cup in total)
- 1/4 tsp. flour ** (for Gluten Free – substitute rice flour)
- 3 TBS fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 lemon, zest of
- Salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 425°
Place potatoes in a large saucepan with cold water to cover and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil over high heat. Then lower the heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Drain well.
Spray a sheet pan with non-stick spray or line with non-stick foil. Place potatoes onto pan and using a glass or jar gently press down on each potato so it is slightly flattened and a little cracked. Using the 1/8 cup olive oil, lightly brush the tops of the potatoes and season with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for an additional 30 minutes.
While the potatoes are roasting, melt the butter with the remaining 1 TBS olive in a skillet over very low heat until just melted. Add remaining ingredients until just blended then take off heat.
Spoon sauce over roasted potatoes and sprinkle with some additional fresh herbs just before serving.