Helen presents: Jill Dupleix’s smashing, crashing

Jill Dupleix is a smasher, and she certainly seems to like smashing things – she had a recipe in The Age the other day which called for smashed garlic cloves. She published this recipe, also in The Age, as the very prosaic “Roast Boiled potatoes”. Recently, I saw a reference to it by the foodie John Lethlean, under the much more satisfying name of “Jill Dupleix’s Smashed potatoes”.

This recipe is going viral. I found Dupleix’s original recipe here, via this wee Scottish blog (love the header), and another one on a Brazilian blog, the Technicolor Kitchen. In this incarnation it’s called Crash-hot potatoes.

But wait- there’s more! there’s an international dispute surrounding this recipe, no less. Did Dupleix steal Florentine chef Michael Chiarello’s Potatoes Da Delfina? No, it seems. Jill spills the beans here to blogger Trish at Light Sweet Crude. (H/T to Zoe.)

crash

Get enough small, round floury potatoes to cover the base of a roasting pan or pyrex dish. You could use chats, new or whatever name your greengrocer gives to little’uns. If you don’t have this type of potato I suppose there is no law against cutting up bigger ones, it just won’t look as posh. Get the oven going berserk – 220 celsius or even hotter.

Boil the potatoes until they’re cooked, but not terribly soft. Drain them and tip them into the roasting pan so they’re kind of jostling together. You only want one layer.

Press a potato masher down on each potato so it bursts slightly. Don’t mash them – just break them a little. They should all be crowded together and touching each other.

Drizzle all of them with some EVOO, then sprinkle coarse sea or rock salt and fresh rosemary over the lot. How much EVOO is up to you. I like lots, but YMMV.

crasher

Incinerate in the hot oven for maybe fifteen-twenty minutes until the broken tops of the potatoes are golden brown and crusty and the interiors have done with any unfinished cooking business. You’re after soft, fluffy spuds with a salty baked crust. Too easy.

crashest

25 comments ↓

#1 Zoe on 15.08.08 at 2:25 pm

I come to praise these potatoes. I first made them after reading a comment of Helen’s on another blog. They are ridiculously good.

#2 Mindy on 15.08.08 at 5:08 pm

Hi Helen.
I discovered my microwave has a jacket potato setting – it takes 10 mins for 4 medium size potatoes at about 850W to make them smashable. Then the olive oil and salt (haven’t tried rosemary, it’s now on the to do list). I smash mine to about 2cm thick so you end up with more of a crunchy disc shape. Also excellent for piling toppings onto like you would do with a baked potato.

#3 Helen on 15.08.08 at 9:43 pm

Oooh yeah, you could think up any number of sybaritic toppings… Pistachios and pine nuts??!
Pesto and pistachios and parmesan?
Help me out here, something not starting with P?
Note the Scottish blogger is using thyme or something instead of rosemary.

#4 Pavlov's Cat on 16.08.08 at 1:46 am

Yep, divine. Yum.

#5 Megxx on 16.08.08 at 7:48 am

Darling!! Whack on a head of garlic and I’d be in heaven.

#6 Rach on 16.08.08 at 4:58 pm

Oh my… I rather love Jill Dupleix, and I think this would be just the thing for Sunday night Movies and Food ™. They do look terribly posh – I especially like the mortar and pestle artfully placed beside the baking tray.

#7 Kate on 16.08.08 at 7:36 pm

There’s an *ahem* Jamie Oliver recipe that builds on this idea with chicken and oregano and balsamic vinegar which is a very easy and very delicious one-pot regular dinner at our house.

#8 Wendy on 16.08.08 at 8:34 pm

Gosh – these are some controversial potatoes, aren’t they? Totally worth it though. :)

#9 Helen on 16.08.08 at 10:35 pm

Wendy’s photos are much more delicious- see here
and here (I think – not so sure about the provenence of the second one.)

MMMMaaaargh.

Thank you, Rach – looks noice except for the silly looking scissors, should have left them out.

#10 Zoe on 17.08.08 at 12:38 pm

mmm, spud porn!

#11 Anthony on 17.08.08 at 5:29 pm

The to-ing and fro-ing at Sweet Crude about the provenance of the dish was interesting. I notice one person claimed recipes don’t have a copy write [sic]. But Richard Olney launched an infringement of copyright suit in the early 1980s over some of his recipes and was successful. That was about recipes in cookbooks. There was a scandal here in Melbourne recently involving recipes in restaurants.

There’s such an appetite (so to speak) for recipes in our weekend supplements and monthly lifestyle magazines, a certain amount of recycling is, I would think, inevitable.

#12 fiona on 17.08.08 at 7:36 pm

Added some garlic and the smell alone had the family hovering in the kitchen eagerly in anticipation.

#13 Zoe on 17.08.08 at 8:07 pm

I remember hearing about that, Anthony – was the accusation that someone had flogged some stuff from Alinea (super posh super cuttin’ edge US joint with ludicrously pretty food)?

There’s an interesting piece from 2006 at megnut on the question. And food blog s’cool, a backroom food blogger site, regularly features posts advising of scraping sites, generally of images rather than recipes.

#14 Zoe on 17.08.08 at 8:17 pm

And Anthony, just tried to send you an email which bounced – can you send me an email to crazybrave@gmail.com so I can proposition you?

#15 Cristy on 17.08.08 at 9:22 pm

I am very hungry now. I was going to go to bed, but am now contemplating cooking…

#16 worldpeace and a speedboat on 17.08.08 at 11:49 pm

mmmmm yeassss… I know someone who (from last count) can’t stand Jill and has been doing something very similar for at least a decade… ‘cept with probably about 4 times the oil and as much garlic as you can cram in between. they’re known as heart-stopper potatoes in some parts ;-)

#17 Nabakov on 18.08.08 at 12:20 am

I just read that post one handed.

Ah potatoes! The devil’s testicles – according to some medieval sources I may have misremembered and can’t be arsed googling.

Seriously, if eveyone one here had to nominate their top five vegetables and we averaged it all, I bet the spud would come out on top.

NB: The tomato is a fruit not a vegetable.

NNB: But anything that involves both potatoes and tomatoes getting their thang on together is totally cool by me.

NNBB: Except that a martini using potato-based vodka and cherry tomatoes substituting for olives is just wrong. WRONG! WRONG! WRONG!

NNNBB: I need a stiff drink after having written that.

NNNBBB: OK, just had one. Y’all can relax now and go about your business.

#18 Laura on 18.08.08 at 5:35 pm

Dorian made these yesterday, they were delicious even though they didn’t smash quite as much as in the picture. We used some fancy variety of $5 a kilo potatoes that I can’t remember the name of. I think they might’ve been a bit on the big side.

#19 David on 19.08.08 at 10:08 pm

I’m drooling. Maybe try it with macadamia oil? I often use it for oven-baked veg.

#20 Bernice on 20.08.08 at 9:47 pm

Bewdiful. Shall add to the cauly in my extensive range of culinary disasters.

From Dutch/American flatmate many many years ago… get thee Pontiacs – slice lengthways in half. Carefully slice with a dangerously sharp knife little slits almost almost through, til they look like wood slaters. Drizzle with EVOO and sprinkle with rock salt. Bake hot and fast.

#21 David on 23.08.08 at 6:16 pm

Bernice – Hasselbaeck potatoes (the name says it all, really … )

I’m doing the squished’n'oiled spuds tonight to accompany a lamb and lettuce friccasse – I’ve never tried it before, so I hope it’s good enough to match the spuds.

#22 Zoe on 26.08.08 at 1:28 pm

How’d you like them, David? I’ve never met anyone who didn’t go crazy for them ;)

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