I’ve been learning Spanish for the past six months and one thing I learnt to say very early on was patatas. You see I love hot chips (fries) and I love roast potatoes and I’m a little bit of a fan of mashed potato, hey I’m even a fan of potato chips (or crisps depending on where you’re from). I know I’m supposed to love sweet potato just that little bit more because sweet potato is better for me. But I just can’t do it. I’ve tried, I really have but a good starchy white potato really is the best kind of potato.
So when we were learning about food names in Spanish I quickly grasped the name patatas, along with cervezza, aqua, insalada and of course pizza (yep, some of this Spanish is really hard). And I also know what foods to avoid when I’m eating – jamon, huevo, carne and pollo. But there’s something special about the word patatas. Just say it out loud to yourself – patatas. If I could record my voice for you right now I would – patatas.
The Spanish school where I study had its grand opening last weekend in a new location. I decided to take along a plate of food – and so I had a crack at making patatas bravas. I had eaten patatas bravas in a couple of Spanish restaurants and researched it online. There seem to be almost as many variations of patatas bravas as there are dialects of Spanish.
So my version of patatas bravas is probably not the traditional patatas bravas, but Pablo, my Spanish teacher loved them. Everyone who tried them loved the potatoes and the sauces.
The crisp outside of the potato skin with the soft inside and then dipped in sauce makes this a delectable snack. And whilst it takes some time from start to finish to create patatas bravas, there is not much hands on time, so you can sit back with some sangria while you’re waiting for those potatoes to cook.
I created two sauces – one is tomato based and the other is a tofu mayonnaise. Have them one at a time or double dip and have both the tomato sauce and the tofu mayonnaise on the seasoned, crispy, roasted potato.
The tomato sauce is best cooked prior to the potatoes so the flavours can develop. Make a big batch and keep it stored in the fridge, ready to be used as a dip at any time.
Both of the sauces will keep for a week or so in the fridge and can be used for other things like pasta, and dips, and spreads. So make a batch and enjoy.