Cubes of golden crispy potatoes topped with a smokey tomato sauce and served with roasted garlic aioli. This healthier Patatas Bravas recipe is one you will be making again and again!
I fell in love with tapas when we lived in Spain for a year. Ordering a number of smaller dishes and leisurely picking from them whilst sipping a cool glass of white wine or Cruzcampo beer in the hot evening sun was a wonderful way to eat. For us, new to Spanish flavours, it was also a fantastic way of trying different authentic dishes and classic flavours.
The tapa idea is such a social way to eat too, and when we have guests over I often make tapas style spreads so everyone can help themselves to what they want, and eat as much – or little – as they like!
Patatas Bravas is a classic tapa dish, with this version I have adjusted it slightly for our tastes (and made a few healthy tweaks!). There are 3 elements to this easy Spanish tapas recipe:
Many Spanish restaurants fry their potatoes, but I prefer to roast them – with their skins. Keeping the skins on is not only easier (no peeling required!), but the skins go extra crispy, and are also a good source of fibre, which many of us don’t eat enough of.
(Salsa brava) is a simple spicy tomato sauce, flavoured with smoked paprika (which is my favourite spice, and I put it in as many dishes as I can!)
Roasting the garlic with the potatoes makes it less pungent – if you want that garlic kick, leave out this step. Mixing plain Greek yogurt with mayo lightens up the aioli, and gives the sauce a slight sharpness, which I love.
Can I Make Patatas Bravas Ahead?
The tomato sauce and the aioli can both be made a day ahead of time. The tomato sauce can be made a couple of days ahead, but I have found the aioli starts to go a little watery if left in the fridge for 2 days.
What can I serve with Patatas Bravas?
You can serve it as a side dish, to meat or fish, or topped with a fried or poached egg for brunch or lunch!
If you want to serve it as part of a tapas menu, here are a few delicious tapas recipes:
Roasted Capsicum Pesto from Its Not Complicated Recipes – Full of Spanish flavour!
Gambas Pil Pil from Sprinkles and Sprouts – Totally addictive prawns!
Pan Con Tomate from Another Food Blogger – Super simple, but so delicious!
Smokey Spanish Meatballs from Whole Food Bellies – meatballs the whole family will love!
Can I make it Dairy Free/Vegan?
You can use dairy free plain yogurt mixed with vegan mayo in place of the regular yogurt and mayo.
If you are looking for more Spanish inspiration, why not have a look at my Torrijas – Spanish Style French Toast
Patatas Bravas Recipe
500g potatoes – keep skins on. Cut into 2 cm cubes (12-18 pieces per potato)
2 tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper
Couple sprigs of fresh rosemary
1 tbsp olive oil
1 Onion – I often use red
2 cloves garlic
1 Tin tomatoes
2 tbsp water
1 tsp smoked paprika
½ tsp ground cumin
¼ tsp cayenne – or splash tobasco – or more, depending on who you are serving it too!
1-2 garlic cloves, unpeeled – either roast with potatoes or leave raw
1 tbsp mayonnaise
1 tsbp plain Greek yogurt
½ tbsp lemon juice
Preheat oven to 200˚C/400˚F
Boil potatoes – place in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil and then boil for 10 mins, until just tender.
Drain, then put the lid back on the saucepan and give a little shake to rough up edges of the potatoes.
Tip out into roasting tin, add the unpeeled garlic cloves and fresh rosemary and drizzle with 2 tbsp olive oil, and season with salt and black pepper. Roast for 15 minutes, then stir the potatoes and check the garlic cloves – if they are soft take them out, as they will cook quicker than the potatoes. Return the potatoes to the oven for another 30-40 minutes, until they are golden all over.
Meanwhile, make the sauce: Fry the onion in olive oil over a low/medium heat until soft. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute before adding the tomatoes, water, smoked paprika, ground cumin, cayenne/tobasco, and season. Simmer gently for 15-20 minutes until thick – when you drag a spoon across the pan the juices don’t instantly fill the gap it left.
To make the aioli: in a bowl mix the mayo and Greek yogurt together, squeeze the roasted garlic out of the skin and beat into the yogurt mixture with the lemon juice and black pepper. Put to one side until ready to serve.
As soon as potatoes are ready, spoon them into heatproof dish and pour over the tomato sauce. I like to leave the garlic aioli on the side for people to add/dip into as they wish, but you could drizzle it over the top if you prefer.