People from my mother’s home village in Lebanon, Bakarkasha, are nicknamed “Batata” which is the Arabic word for “Potatoes.” Apparently they are known for their love for potatoes, and their many different ways of enjoying this food staple. Just the other day mom reminded me of this fact when she threw at me yet another potato recipe, and this time around it’s sauteed with cilantro and garlic.
“Potatoes in Garlic and Cilantro” serves as a delicious appetizer and is quite simple to make. I got it right the first time around.
If you are health conscious and would like to avoid frying the potatoes, you may also bake them as long as you get them to a nice crispy texture (perhaps just dazzle a few droplets of oil on them prior to baking them). We prefer the fried version, but I fried them using organic coconut oil which can sustain high temperatures.
- 4 large potatoes
- 1 bunch green cilantro (or ½ cup dried cilantro leaves)
- 5-8 large fresh garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 3 table spoons of olive oil
- A dash of salt
- Slice the potatoes into small cubes of about ¾ inch with a thickness of about ½ inch. Fry them in oil until they are golden/crispy (or alternatively bake them in the oven until they’re crispy). Salt them lightly.
- Meanwhile rinse the cilantro leaves then discard the stems, and chop the leaves very finely. Lay the leaves on a paper towel for a few minutes to dry the water from them.
- In a deep frying pan, add the crushed garlic then saute it on medium heat in the 3 tablespoons of olive oil just for a couple of minutes. You want the garlic to stay a bit raw, not fully cooked, or otherwise if you overcook the garlic it looses its flavor.
- Add a tiny pinch of salt, then add the chopped cilantro and the lemon juice to the garlic and saute/mix them well for a minute or two.
- Finally add the fried potatoes to the pot, mix it well with the saute and cook it for 3-5 more minutes while stirring, and you’re done.
- BONUS: If you love spicy food, finely chop a bit of green jalapeno or Serrano peppers and add them during the cilantro saute
- Serve hot or cold as an appetizer.