Growing up in Salt Lake City where there is a large Greek community, I have long had a love affair with Mediterranean food, particularly Greek food. My friend Emily Rizzo, and especially her mom Joanne, can attest to my obsession with lemon rice in high school. I had an insatiable desire for Greek food! When I went away to Oregon for college, I was surprised to find that not every city had the amazing Greek food that Salt Lake did. I had to get my fix another way....
While I picked up a new taste for oysters, mushrooms and IPAs in Oregon, I still have this deep desire to eat Greek food as often as possible. That is where Melia Marden's "Modern Mediterranean" cookbook comes in. I have posted... a lot... of her recipes on this blog because I love them so much! Melia grew up part time on the Greek island, Hydra and many of her recipes are based on her childhood memories of the food there. Her recipes are full of bright flavors and the recipes themselves are accessible to any cook. I have been working my way through her cookbook to get my Mediterranean fix while also dreaming of visiting the Greek islands (one day!!!).
This particular recipe for Lemony Roasted Potatoes is a favorite of Brendan's and mine and we make it often. Initially, I didn't make it because grapes and potatoes together sounded so... weird. But then I read Melia Marden's recipe notes. She based this recipe on her memory of delicious lemon infused roasted potatoes from a local taverna on Hydra that overlooks the village fishing boats. I mentally transported myself to that spot and did not want to return. So I made the potatoes and continued my mental escape to the Greek Islands. I suggest you give it a try too!
My favorite things to serve with these potatoes are Rosemary and Oregano Pork Chops, or Balsamic Roasted Chicken, and Grilled Corn, Tomato and Red Onion Salad or a simple Greek salad and Mint Sugar and Strawberries for dessert. If you're not afraid to go with the Lemony-Greek theme, I highly recommend serving Grilled Halloumi with Lemon as a starter!
Serves 4 as a side
Two years ago: Spring Greens with Warm Goat Cheese, Pan Roasted Radishes in Browned Butter, Banana Crunch Muffins
Three years ago: Thai Grilled Chicken, White Pizzas with Arugula, Brazilian Lemonade, Fried Egg and Arugula Roll Up