Sunday, April 19, 2009

Hudie's Potatoes

Thinking of being in the kitchen making stock, I recalled another kitchen adventure — cooking dinner for 20+ at Lydia’s coop last summer. Dinner at the coop has to be vegetarian with a vegan option, and I hadn’t cooked for a crowd for a while. It was great to use big pots again!

On my way to Chicago, I stopped in Ohio to visit Cousin Manda and Uncle John Aiken. Manda’s sweetheart (and now husband) David Hudak was there, and he told me about potatoes his mom used to cook, which I tried out on the Chicago crew. They loved it! Here’s how Hudie told me to cook potatoes.

New red potatoes are the best. Quarter as many as you need.
Thin-slice as many onions as you want.
Use a big, thick (iron if possible) pan with a tight-fitting lid.
Fry the onions slowly (I use canola oil), with lashings of salt and pepper.
Stir in the quartered potatoes. Maybe add more pepper and mix it all well.
Turn the heat down to low and cover tightly.
Check for burning occasionally and stir, to keep the mixture from sticking.
After maybe fifteen minutes, add LOTS AND LOTS of fresh paprika
(I used a whole bottle when cooking for 20+).
Keep cooking. Add more oil if necessary. Paprika is just horrible when it scorches (and the smell is even more vile), so you can’t ignore it completely even though your main attention can be elsewhere.
When the potatoes are cooked through, season to taste. More pepper doesn’t hurt.
The dish should be bright red, with a delicious crust on every potato piece. The paprika taste is subtle but present and it all smells wonderful. This is great for dinner with other colorful food, also good with eggs in the morning.

Red food makes me smile, and it made Lydia’s housemates happy too.

1 comment:

Christine Lehner said...

Diggitt- I love the recipe and plan to try it very soon.And the blog is merveilleux. C