Here’s another idea I lifted from Bar Tartine. Their smoked potatoes with black garlic are unique and delicious. I couldn’t possibly replicate them at home. First, because I don’t have black garlic, and second, I don’t have a clue as to how they smoke their potatoes. As to the black garlic, you can order it from Blackgarlic.com in Hollister, CA, near the garlic capital of the world – Gilroy.
Still, an effort was worth a try, especially if I dragged out my Camerons Stovetop Smoker. The smoker is one of the niftiest things in my batterie de cuisine even though I don’t use it that much. With it, I can hot smoke fish, poultry, meat, and anything else you can fit into it without filling the house with smoke. The smoker is available from the manufacturer, Amazon, kitchen stores, and several big-box retailers for under $60.
Camerons also sells wood chips specially sized for the smoker. The wood chips that you find in the barbecuing section of the grocery store are too big. But Camerons gives you a choice of apple, alder, cherry, hickory, maple, mesquite, oak, pecan, and even corn cob. I used alder, and I think it was a good choice.
As a substitute for the black garlic, I smoked fresh garlic with the potatoes in the hope that it would caramelize and then used for an aïoli. That turned out to be reasonably successful.
Smoked New Potatoes
- 1/3 cup special smoker wood chips
- 6-8 small new red potatoes for each diner, well-scrubbed
- 3 tablespoons butter, melted
- coarse Kosher salt
- Prepare the smoker by placing the wood chips in the center of the bottom of the smoker. Line the tray with aluminum foil, and arrange it and the rack in the smoker.
- Arrange the potatoes on the rack with the garlic in a small aluminum foil nest in the center (see below)
- With a brush, lightly baste each of the potatoes on all sides and sprinkle generously with the salt.
- Slide the cover onto the smoker, leaving a 3 inch opening. Place over medium heat on the stove top. When smoke begins to come out of the opening, close to form a tight seal. You will be able to smell the smoke, and you may see a faint wisp, but there should be no smoke coming out of the sealed smoker.
- Roast for 45 minutes. Remove the smoker from the heat, and open the top.
- Transfer the potatoes to a serving bowl
Caramelized Garlic Aïoli
- 6 cloves of garlic, peeled and stems removed
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- juice of ½ lemon
- salt and pepper to taste
- Crumple a sheet of aluminum foil into a small “nest” large enough to hold the garlic. Set the nest in the center of the potatoes on the smoker rack.
- Smoke according to directions above.
- When the potatoes are smoked, transfer the garlic to a small bowl and mash with a fork or pass through a garlic press.
- Stir in the mayonnaise and lemon juice. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper
- Serve as a dip with the potatoes.