Summer Fest: Potatoes, Iron Chef-Style

By: Sara Levine
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We're teaming up with other food and garden bloggers to host Summer Fest 2010, a season-long garden party. Each week we'll feature favorite garden-to-table recipes and tips to help you enjoy the bounty, whether you're harvesting your own goodies or buying them fresh from the market. To join in, check out

Potatoes are a blank canvas—the possibilities are endless. They can be healthy (boiled or baked), rich (mashed with generous amounts of cream and butter) and anything in between. Michael Symon, host of Cook Like an Iron Chef, chooses to go decadent. What does he use to make simple roasted potatoes Kitchen Stadium-worthy? Duck fat, of course!

For chefs, duck fat is liquid gold. When you sear a duck breast (try Ching-He Huang’s Crispy Duck) and let the fat render out, never throw it away. Strain the fat and store it in a sealed container in the refrigerator or freezer for future uses, like Michael’s potatoes. Or, start with duck skin and follow the easy rendering process in the Iron Chef's recipe.

It’s hard to improve upon nicely browned, crisp-on-the-outside, soft-on-the-inside potatoes, seasoned with salt and pepper and maybe some herbs. But duck fat gives them a whole new level of flavor. Try any of these simple roasted potato recipes, subbing in duck fat for the oil. You may never go back…unless you’re having vegetarians over for dinner.

Check out our potato gallery of great potato recipes for more tasty ideas.

More Summer Fest Potatoes from Family and Friends:

Join the conversation on Twitter at #summerfood.
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