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A twist on comfort potato dishes to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day

Originally a religious holiday to honor Saint Patrick in the fifth century, St. Patrick’s Day has evolved into a popular holiday for friends to gather after work, making this the highest grossing day of the year for bars and restaurants.

While many bars and restaurants may still be at limited capacity, or closed completely, due to the pandemic, these chef-provided recipes can help you celebrate at home.

Versatility is the Idaho potato’s biggest asset, and these chefs have loaded fries and tots with a variety of flavors. Idaho potato WesBurger shawarma tots features savory lamb and a refreshing salad topping. Another meaty take features pork and a deeply flavored Harissa Aioli in Idaho potato pig fries. Fire stick French fries celebrate this classic comfort food with the spicy heat that many crave.

Idaho potato WesBurger shawarma tots

Recipe provided by Wes Rowe

Potato tots (processed or housemade)

Lamb:

4 pounds boneless leg of lamb

1 1/4 tablespoons cumin

1 1/4 tablespoons coriander

1 1/4 tablespoons garlic powder

3/4 tablespoon paprika

1 1/2 teaspoons turmeric powder

3/4 teaspoon ground cloves

3/4 teaspoon black pepper

3/4 teaspoon cinnamon

salt, to taste

Cucumber tomato salad:

1 cucumber, chopped

1 tomato, chopped

1/3 cup parsley, chopped

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 teaspoon lemon juice

Zhoug:

1 cup coriander

1 cup parsley, roughly chopped

3 jalapeños, seeded and roughly chopped

1/2 teaspoon cumin

1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom

1/2 teaspoon sugar

2 garlic cloves, crushed

3 tablespoons olive oil

feta cheese

tahini

parsley

For the lamb: Combine spices. Butterfly the leg of lamb, and generously coat with spice rub.

Grill over mesquite charcoal, turning frequently, until the meat thermometer reading reaches 140°F at the thickest part. Let rest 10 minutes, then carve into thin slices.

For the cucumber tomato salad: combine all ingredients.

For the zhoug: combine all ingredients.

For the tots: Once toppings are prepared, fry or bake the potato tots. To serve, pile them high and top them with the lamb, salad and zhoug. Garnish with feta, tahini and parsley.

Idaho potato pig fries

Recipe provided by Chef Eric Gallerstein

6 lbs Idaho russet potatoes, cut in ¼-inch slices

1 cup salt

6 tablespoons white vinegar

Oil for frying

Harissa Aioli:

2 tablespoons coriander seed

2 tablespoons fennel seed

2 tablespoons cumin seed

2 tablespoons caraway seed

6 egg yolks

3/4 cup chipotle chilies in adobo sauce

2 tablespoons honey

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

1 tablespoons cider vinegar

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

2 teaspoons garlic, minced

1 tablespoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

3 cup canola oil

Toppings:

12 oz Cotija cheese

1 pound prepared carnitas, warmed

1 pound cooked sausage such as chorizo, warmed

1 pound cooked pork belly or bacon

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

Combine potatoes, salt and white vinegar in a saucepan; add water to cover by 2 inches. Bring to a boil; simmer until potatoes are fork tender but do not fall apart.

Drain. Spread in single layer on a parchment lined sheet pan and freeze overnight.

To prepare the Harissa Aioli, grind spices in a high-speed blender, spice grinder or coffee grinder.

Combine spices, egg yolks and next 9 ingredients (chilies through pepper) in blender or food processor. Gradually add oil while blending until mixture thickens to the consistency of mayonnaise.

Keep refrigerated.

To prepare the Pig Fries, heat a fryer or 2-3 inches of oil to 350°F in a deep saucepan. Let potatoes thaw for about 15 minutes (8 ounces per serving). Fry to a deep golden brown. Drain.

Shingle a portion of potatoes on a serving plate. Drizzle with about 2 tablespoons Harissa Aioli.

Top with about 1 ounce (1/4 cup) of each of the toppings, starting with the Cotija cheese and ending with the pork belly or bacon.

Drizzle with about 2 more tablespoons Aioli. Garnish with 1 tablespoon cilantro.

Fire stick French fries

Recipe provided by Motorola Food Works

12 Idaho potatoes (makes 96 wedges)

1/2 cup olive oil

1 tablespoon cayenne pepper

1 tablespoon salt

1 tablespoon garlic, granulated

2 tablespoons paprika

1 tablespoon chili powder

Cut the potatoes into 8 wedges. Coat the potatoes in the olive oil.

Combine all spices together. Coat the oiled potatoes with the spice mixture until they are evenly covered.

Bake the potatoes in a 350ºF oven until the center of the potatoes has reached 180ºF and the outsides are crispy.

Hold at a minimum temperature of 140ºF for service.

For more information about quality Idaho potatoes and entrée inspiration for St. Patrick’s Day visit idahopotato.com/foodservice. On the site, find a helpful size guide and Idaho potato preparation tips, as well as operational and culinary FAQs and culinary education tools.

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