The standout feature of Mediterranean cuisine is the lending and blending of neighbouring countries’ flavours, cooking techniques, ingredients, and meal preparations. Roasted lemon potatoes are a Greek specialty, cooked radishes from France, and olives in anything seem characteristically Italian (even if you can unquestionably find them outside of Italy).
Today’s sheet-pan side dish adds to this blog’s very short list of 5-ingredient recipes (always discounting salt, pepper, and oil). It’s my version of the Italian Insalata di Patate (potato salad), combining the Mediterranean’s finest for a light meal or side that can be eaten warm, room temperature, or chilled. And make sure not to discard the lemon slices (yes, you can eat the skin!), as they get caramelized and sweet, adding a palate-popping punch when you least expect it.
Roasted lemons are a lovely addition to a variety of dishes, namely, Caesar salad with roasted lemons, which I enjoyed the other day. Or, throw them in a Moroccan-inspired chickpea stew instead of dried fruit. Or, why not top a burger with a slice? Imagine a crostini spread with goat cheese and topped with a stained glass sliver of roasted lemon. As you can see, roasted lemons can do no wrong; I bet they’d even work in sweet applications if you skip the savoury spices.
Roasted Potatoes, Radishes, Lemons, and Olives Recipe
A sheet-pan side dish with roasted potatoes, radishes, whole lemons, and olives. This minimalist recipe comes together quickly enough for a weeknight, but works just as well for fuss-free entertaining.
1 pound (4 medium) yellow-fleshed potatoes (I like Yukon Gold), cut into wedges
½ pound (1 bunch) radishes, tops and greens intact, left whole
1 lemon, thinly sliced and seeded
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon dried thyme or 1 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped
½ teaspoon salt
Ground black pepper, to taste
1 cup large green olives such as Castelvetrano or Cerignola, pitted, left whole
- Preheat oven to 375ºF.
- On a large rimmed baking sheet, combine potatoes, radishes, lemon, oil, thyme, salt, and pepper. Roast for 45 minutes. Toss with olives and serve warm, room temperature, or chilled.