Vegan Patatas Bravas
These vegan patatas bravas, topped with a spicy and smoky brava sauce and vegan aioli, are destined to be the most popular dish at your next barbeque or summer dinner party.
The potatoes in this recipe are first boiled, to cook them through, and then fried, to make them crispy and crunchy. Traditionally, the potatoes are first fried over low heat and then fried, for a second time, on higher heat. I found the results to be pretty similar with both methods, so the choice is yours over which avenue to go down. The key with the boiling-first cooking method is to ensure the potatoes are fully dried before being submerged in the oil as any water will make the oil splatter as soon as the potatoes hit the pan, which can be both messy and painful.
Vegetable oil, for frying
2 tbsp olive oil
1 shallot, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely sliced
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp smoked paprika
¼ tsp chilli powder
2 tbsp (30g) tomato paste
2 tbsp plain flour
250ml vegetable stock
2 tsp sherry vinegar
100g vegan mayonnaise
1 clove garlic
Start by preparing the potatoes, by slicing them into roughly 2cm pieces. Add them to a saucepan and cover them with cold water and 1 tbsp of salt.
Bring the potatoes to a boil, and cook them for 8-10 minutes, until a knife can be inserted into the centre of the largest piece of potato, but they’re still holding their shape.
Drain the potatoes, and let them cool for 10 minutes then use a tea towel or kitchen roll to pat them dry.
While the potatoes cook, prepare the sauce. Heat 2 tbsp of olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Add the finely chopped shallot and sauté it for 5-6 minutes, until it starts to soften.
Next, add the sliced garlic and salt, and continue to cook the shallots and garlic for 4-5 minutes, until lightly golden.
Stir in the smoked paprika and chilli powder, and toast the spices for 2-3 minutes, until fragrant. Next, add the tomato paste and cook it for 2-3 minutes, until it darkens in colour. Stir in the flour, and toast it for 2-3 minutes to remove the “raw” flour flavour.
Next, whisk in the vegetable stock. Simmer the sauce for 4-5 minutes, where it will thicken and darken in colour. Stir in the sherry vinegar, taste for seasoning and adjust to taste. Transfer the sauce into a blender or food processor, and blend it until it’s smooth and creamy.
Next, fry the potatoes. Fill a saucepan with around 4cm of oil and heat it over medium heat until it reaches 180˚C. Fry the potatoes in 2-3 batches, for 5-6 minutes, until they’re crispy and golden brown.
Use a slotted spoon to transfer the potatoes from the pan and onto a dish lined with kitchen roll, to remove the excess oil, and sprinkle them with salt.
Last, make the aioli by combining the plant based mayonnaise and a finely grated clove of garlic.
Serve the potatoes topped with the brava sauce and the aioli.
By Valentina Concordia
Valentina is our Food Editor, who dreams up our tasty dishes and recipes for our social channels. She has loads of experience cooking up a storm in Italian kitchens, so it’s no surprise she can’t live without good-quality olive oil (don’t come between her and her olive oil) and fresh pasta.