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Perfect Roast Potatoes // 1930s

Updated: May 17, 2020

Good grief, just look at them. Golden, crispy, fluffy on the inside... and these 1930s roast potatoes tasted even better than they looked! Absolute perfection!
After trying this recipe, we're quite certain that we will never use another when making roast potatoes again. That's it. Game over. This recipe wins.
Original Recipe: 'Roast Potatoes' (Book 5, 1936)
Speed: 1 hour - 1 hour 15 mins, overall


  • 2 medium sized potatoes per person. Choose potatoes of as nearly the same size as possible.

  • 3-4 tbsp. dripping - if not cooking beneath a joint of meat (see below)

  • A little salt



1. Wash and brush the potatoes in cold water to remove the earth, then throw them in a basin of cold water. Peel the potatoes as thinly as possible, cutting out the black spots (eyes). As they are peeled, throw them back into cold water, and if very large cut them in half length-ways.

2. Put the peeled potatoes in a saucepan with just enough cold salted water to cover, and bring to the boil on a medium heat. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low and allow to boil gently for a further 20-30 minutes or until a skewer can be rather easily run through them.

3. Once they are cool enough to handle, strain and dry the potatoes well in a cloth and then proceed to either:

4. a) Put them into the tin beneath a joint of meat that you are roasting with which they are to be served, or;

b) Put them into a baking tin with three or four tablespoonfuls of dripping.

5. Sprinkle with salt and bake in the oven for ¾ hour to 1 hour at 180°C fan (350°F/Gas Mark 4), or until they are soft and nicely brown.

Looking for a recipe for a roast dinner to serve these gorgeous potatoes with? How about our recipes for:

1910s - Rolled Roast Leg of Lamb or Mutton (WW1 Era recipe)

1930s - Roast Neck of Lamb (WW2 Era recipe)

1940s - Braised Fillet of Beef (WW1 Era recipe)


Original Recipe for 'Roast Potatoes'

'BOOK 5': Cookery Illustrated and Household Management (1936)

By: Elizabeth Craig

Publisher: Odhams Press Limited (Long Acre, London, W.C.2, England, U.K.)

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