Jamie: "In my eyes, a good roast potato is one of the most important things in cooking. How is it that such a humble little vegetable can make people so happy? Have a go at this recipe - it will give you potatoes that are perfectly crispy on the outside and fluffy in the middle. The principle of par-cooking in boiling water, then tossing in flavoured oil and roasting until deliciously golden and crisp, is just about the same for any other root veg, particularly parsnips and carrots, so I've included these in the recipe too. The best time to put the vegetables in the oven is about 40 minutes before the meat is ready to come out. While it rests there'll be more space in the oven and you'll be able to move the veg up to the top shelf to finish them off to perfection."
Taken from Jamie's Ministry of Food
1. If you're cooking these separately and not with my perfect roast chicken, preheat your oven to 200°C/400ºF/gas 6.
2. Peel the vegetables and halve any larger ones lengthways. Break the garlic bulb into cloves, leaving them unpeeled, and bash them slightly with the palm of your hand. Pick the rosemary leaves off their woody stalks.
3. Put the potatoes and carrots into a large pan - you may need to use two - of salted, boiling water on a high heat and bring back to the boil. Allow to boil for 5 minutes, then add the parsnips and cook for another 4 minutes. Drain in a colander and allow to steam dry.
4. Take out the carrots and parsnips and put to one side. Fluff up the potatoes in the colander by shaking it around a little - it's important to 'chuff them up' like this if you want them to have all those lovely crispy bits when they're cooked.
5. Put a large roasting tray over a medium heat and either add a few generous lugs of olive oil or carefully spoon a little of the fat from the meat you're cooking. Add the garlic and the rosemary leaves. Put the vegetables in the tray with a good pinch of salt and pepper and stir them around to coat them in the flavours. Spread them out evenly into one layer - this is important, as you want them to roast, not steam as they will if you have them all on top of each other.
6. Put them into the preheated oven for about 1 hour, or until golden, crisp and lovely. Serve immediately, with your roast dinner and your gravy.
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