Patatas Bravas

Looking for a crunchy, tangy, and spicy snack? My wife and I first had Patatas Bravas at a Spanish tapas restaurant in Vancouver. We instantly fell in love with the crunchy texture of the potatoes, the tangy flavour of the bravas sauce, and the creamy texture of the Aioli. It seemed like a match made in heaven!

Patatas Bravas Picture
When I went fully plant-based a few years ago, I had trouble recreating dishes that I ate at restaurants. Either it was too time consuming or I didn't get the flavours quite right. But I stuck to my guns and kept cooking, seeking help from plant-based communities. With the support and guidance of some awesome people, I am able to now veganize most dishes that I ate outside. That's why I really want to share what I have learnt so that you can benefit, and we can all become a healthy and compassionate community.
 
With this, I want to leave you with this recipe. Enjoy cooking!
 
Serves: 2
Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 50 mins
 
Ingredients:
  • 6 medium-sized potatoes
  • 2-3 sprigs of fresh thyme or 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp sweet smoked paprika (if you don't have sweet regular will work)
  • 1 tsp cayenne powder
  • 1/2 cup soaked cashews* (see note below)
  • 1/2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tbsp chopped cilantro
Instructions:
  1. Preheat your oven to 500 F.
  2. Place a big pot of cold water on high heat.
  3. Add 2 tsp salt to the water and bring to boil.
  4. In the meantime, chop each potato into roughly equal size pieces (I cut them into 8 pieces per potato).
  5. Add baking soda to the pot of water (you will see the water bubbling even more but don't worry, this is natural).
  6. Add the potatoes and cook until they are soft but not mushy.
  7. In the meantime, let's make our herb-infused oil. For this place a pan on medium heat and add 1 tbsp olive oil.
  8. When the oil is hot, add the thyme and let the flavour infuse for 1 minute.
  9. Drain the oil in a mixing bowl to which you will add the potatoes later.
  10. Drain the water from the boiled potatoes and let the potatoes stay in the same pot for 5 minutes This will help them get dry from the heat. The drier the potato surface, the crispier they will become.
  11. Meanwhile, chop the cilantro very finely and mince the garlic.
  12. Add the potatoes to the mixing bowl with the oil and vigorously shake it until the oil is coated. The potatoes will appear slightly mushy on the surface. This is exactly what we want to see and this is what will make the potatoes crispy in the oven.
  13. Take a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and brush oil on it. Add the potatoes to it in a single line so that each potato piece touches the parchment paper.
  14. Place it in the oven and bake for 40 minutes. Flip the potatoes after 20 minutes.
  15. Now it's time to make the sauce. Place a skillet on medium heat and add 1 tsp oil.
  16. Add the minced garlic to the oil, and saute it for a minute.
  17. Then add the smoked paprika, and cayenne and quickly mix it for 30 seconds. Keeping it longer will burn the spices.
  18. Add the tomato paste and add 1/2 cup water. Adjust the water to make it runny or thick per your liking.
  19. Cook for 2 minutes and turn off the heat. Keep aside.
  20. For the cashew cream sauce, simply blend the drained cashews, 1/2 tsp salt and lemon juice. Add water to help blend if needed.
  21. Once your potatoes are done, you are all set to assemble your Patatas Bravas.
  22. Take a bowl, add the potatoes, smear sauce generously, add chopped cilantro and finally top it with the cashew cream sauce. Serve hot and enjoy!
If you try this recipe, let us know in the comments. And, don’t forget to tag a photo@plant_astic_food on Instagram.

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