Photo by: Colin Campbell

Roasted potatoes with caramel & Agen prunes

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1kg floury potatoes, such as Maris Piper
8 tbsp goose fat
½ tsp salt
150g whole soft Agen prunes, stones removed
90g caster sugar
50ml iced water

We seriously urge you to give this a go, even if it sounds overtly over the top, what with all that fat and cloying sweetness. The actual result is wonderfully crispy, salty and gently sweet. Goose fat you can collect from your roasting goose (see recipe here). Serves four.

Method

Preheat the oven to 220C/450F/gas mark 8. Peel the potatoes. Leave the small ones whole and halve the larger ones, so you end up with pieces of around 60g each. Keep them in cold water to prevent discoloration.

Rinse the potatoes under cold water to remove the starch, then put in a large pan filled with cold water, bring to a boil and simmer for eight to 10 minutes. Drain into a colander and shake to roughen the edges - this will help achieve the desired crunchy skin.

Put the goose fat in a roasting tray and heat in the oven for about eight minutes, until smoking. Carefully lift the tray from the oven, tip in the potatoes and use metal tongs to roll them around in the hot fat. Return the tray to the highest shelf of the oven and cook for 50 to 65 minutes, until the potatoes are golden and crunchy on the outside, and soft in the middle. While they are cooking, turn them over from time to time to make sure they colour evenly. Once the potatoes are almost ready, take the tray out of the oven and carefully tip out most of the fat into a heatproof bowl. Add the salt and prunes, and stir gently. Return to the oven for five minutes.

During this time, make the caramel. Put the sugar in a heavy-based pan and place over a low heat. Without stirring, watch the sugar as it turns a rich, caramel colour. Keep your eyes on the sugar at all times because it can easily catch and burn. The moment it reaches the desired colour, remove from the heat. With your face at a safe distance, quickly pour the water into the caramel to stop it from cooking any more, then return to the heat and stir to eliminate any lumps.

Before serving, stir the caramel into the potatoes and prunes. Transfer to a bowl and eat at once.

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