Tapas Night!  Pan Roasted Potatoes & Paprika Aioli

This little gem is a great to make for tapas night when you have lots of other little bites to go along with it or it’s just as good doubled or tripled for a weekend brunch menu.  The key is to make sure the aioli is creamy and the potatoes are crisp.  So take the time to whisk the aioli by hand and slowly add in the oil.  If you add the oil too quickly it won’t emulsify.  In a pinch you can add the cayenne, lemon, paprika and salt to mayonnaise but I think it’s really worth it to make the aioli if you have the time. 

I really like how potatoes turn out in a cast iron pan.  Every stove is different but if you par boil the potatoes first then it shouldn’t take more than 10-15 minutes on the stove top to get them crisp on the outside and tender on the inside.  And the great part is you can boil them ahead of time and just refrigerate (whole) until ready to cook.  The addition of the butter adds flavor and helps the potatoes get a nice brown color but I start with canola oil because it has a higher smoke point (works on higher temps).  When I do add the butter and garlic I add them on top of the potatoes and let them just flavor them.  The butter soaks right in..mmmm. Remember to remove the garlic before you serve!  This dish is perfect with a cheese platter, some bacon wrapped dates, and something fresh like a salad.  


  1. Make the aioli by placing the egg yolks and water in a medium dish and whisking.  Slowly add in the oil, one tablespoon at a time.  As the mixture thickens continue to add more, a little at a time.  Once you’ve achieved the desired creamy consistency add in the cayenne, paprika, lemon juice, and salt.  Whisk a little more to incorporate and taste for seasoning.  Refrigerate until ready to use.  Makes more than is needed for this recipe.


  1. Bring a medium sauce pan with water to a low boil and add in the potato. Boil for approximately 10 minute. You can test it with a sharp knife and should be able to pierce it but there is some give, not fork tender.  You don’t want the potato to be soft or it will fall apart in the pan.  Remove from water, cool, peel and cube into ¼ inch dice.
  2. Heat a small or medium cast iron skillet over medium heat and add in the canola oil. When hot add the potatoes in an even layer. It’s important that they lie in a flat even layer, do not overcrowd the pan.  Season generously with salt and pepper.  Cook without moving until first side is browned and crusty, then toss and add in the 2 halves of garlic and the teaspoon of butter.  Cook on other sides, again without moving until crusty.  If the pan is too hot then turn down to medium low to ensure the outside gets browned and crispy and the inside is cooked through.  Total cook time should be about 15 minutes total.
  3. Remove from heat and garnish with chopped chives and crumbled pancetta.  You may need to add a little more water to the aioli if it’s too thick.  Drizzle a little over the top of the potatoes and serve the rest on the side.

1 medium Yukon gold potato

1 large clove garlic, peeled and cut in half

1 teaspoon Canola oil

1 teaspoon unsalted butter

1 Tablespoon chopped chives

1 slice Pancetta, cooked to crisp

Kosher salt


Smoked Paprika Aioli

2 egg yolks

2 teaspoons water

1 cup canola oil

2 dashes Cayenne pepper

½ teaspoon smoked Paprika

2 teaspoons Lemon juice

½ teaspoon kosher salt

*Serves 2-3 as part of a small bites menu

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1 Comment

  • comment-avatar
    Jenn June 17, 2015 (10:20 am)

    These potatoes are perfect and the sauce to go with them is so yummy too. We have made these before and I came back to the blog to make them tonight and almost panicked when I couldn’t find it right away (user error) so wanted to make sure everyone knows how good they are! Thank you for sharing!