The standout feature of Mediterranean cuisine––besides its great taste––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––it’s almost too gourmet to handle. 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.
A wee confession: I made this recipe when it was still spring. However, summer radishes are in their glory at the farmers’ market right now; they’re a bit larger and sharper this time of year, foiling the creaminess of the potatoes beautifully, giving this whole sheet-pan supper a bit of a horseradish kick. Like the whole lemons, you are to eat the radishes whole, greenery and all. Not only are you reducing food waste, you’re getting some super-interesting leafy greens in your life. The radish greens take on a bit of a kale chip vibe, and there’s really nothing wrong with that.
Of course, (if my sister is reading this, she’ll roll her eyes) I can’t mention a dish including Yukon Gold potatoes without bragging about how they were “invented” at my alma mater, the University of Guelph. They’re buttery and rich, ideal for mashing, roasting, pureeing, latke-ing, and more. Plus, they have a very Canadian, very cute name.
I predict another potato recipe on here in the near future as I just picked up a pound of fresh, ragged-skinned tricoloured gems the other day––but that will have to wait. For now, I leave you with this easy, 5-ingredient, non-boring, yummy, crispy (did I mention easy?) potato recipe.
- 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.