Last Friday I had a girl’s night out with my talented artist friend, Sarah Moore. We decided to go out for a drink and a quick bite to eat before catching the new Bond movie on opening night.
Sarah suggested the local Pasadena wine bar, Bodega. We each picked something from the tapas menu to share. She chose the delicious Roasted Fingerling Potatoes with Shallots and Herbs de Provence and Aioli. “Ooh!” she said, “can you recreate this?”, after we had eaten a few bites.
That’s the good thing about having gone to cooking school. It’s fairly easy to play food detective. Aioli is a classic French garlicky type of mayo (only better). A few sniffs and nibbles and I decided there was a bit of tarragon and a little more lemon juice than a classic Aioli.
While we ate and drank, we talked about her beautiful Arts and Crafts style pottery, her company, Sassafrass, and how she went from being a 2 dimensional painter and illustrator to a three dimensional potter and what inspired her to. Sarah started pottery, just after her nearly 13 year old daughter was born, when she was dragged to a class by a friend. She said that growing up in Pasadena with its strong Arts and Crafts Movement was what influenced her style. (To see a brief film of Sarah and her website, click here.)
The Colorado Street bridge is one of her most popular images. She also works by commission. I’ve seen her pieces and each one is more beautiful than the next!
So, this is my version of Bodega’s, Roasted Fingerling Potatoes with Shallots and Herbs de Provence with Tarragon Aioli, for Sarah. My family loved it so much, that we ended up putting it on, not only the potatoes, but the shrimp I made for dinner that night, and drizzled on our salads.
- Preheat oven to 450* F.
- 1½ pounds fingering potatoes, halved or quartered depending on the size of the potato...They should be finger-grabbing size.
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Herbs de Provence*
- Kosher salt
- Fresh cracked pepper
- This is one of those recipes I just make by feel.
- In a large mixing bowl toss potatoes with enough olive oil to coat, but not drench the potatoes.
- Add 2 to 3 tablespoons of herbs de Provence, kosher salt and pepper and mix until the potatoes are coated.
- Spread them out on a baking sheet or pan and roast for 25 to 35 minutes or until golden brown and when a knife will easily pierce the potatoes.
- 1 egg yolk** room temperature (use pasteurized eggs to guarantee safety from salmonella)
- juice of 1 lemon
- Up to 1 cup of olive oil
- 2 to 3 cloves of garlic depending on the size of the clove and how much you like garlic, minced.
- 1 tablespoon fresh, finely chopped tarragon
- Kosher salt and pepper to taste
- In a mixing bowl whisk lemon juice, egg yolk and garlic.
- In a slow and steady stream, add olive oil, whisking constantly until aioli is desired consistency...think thinnish mayo.
- Whisk in chopped tarragon and season to taste.
- Use the left-over aioli on our sautéed shrimp and as a salad dressing!
*Herbs de Provence is a blend of herbs including savory, thyme, basil, fennel and lavender. It can be found in most grocery stores.