Spicy Patatas Bravas Recipe

Recipe by Neil Morris

patatas bravas

Region: Valencia, Canary Islands, Balearic Islands

Preparation: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 25 mins

Oven temp: cooked on hob

Difficulty: easy

Serves: 4


I have a problem with Patatas Bravas - the problem is finding a dish that lives up to my expectations.

I first ate this popular tapas dish when I was on a family holiday in Majorca about thirty years ago and it was fantastic; a wonderful flavour that evokes memories of my early induction into Spanish cuisine. It was years before I would taste a version as good again and it is still rare that any live up to that early benchmark.

Having tried just about every recipe under the sun, I soon realised that the ones that worked best for me were the tomato-free versions that are commonly found in Valencia and the Canary Islands.

This recipe involves making a paste that is similar in style to the mojo picon sauce that is used for all sorts of recipes in the Canary Islands and has the double-kick of chili heat and vinegar that I have come to expect from a good Patatas Bravas.

This recipe is staggeringly simple but packs so much flavour it never fails to impress as a tapas dish.

Shopping list


Chop the potatoes into large bite size chunks and boil in salted water for 6-8 mins until just about tender but still holding together. Then fry on a moderate heat in about 3-4 tbsp of olive oil until cooked through and golden, this should take about 10-15 mins.

Crush the cumin seeds, chopped dried peppers and garlic in a pestle and mortar until it is a soft paste. Add the sweet and hot paprika and continue to mix then finally add the vinegar; you should have a smooth paste that is rich in colour. Add a drop more vinegar to loosen slightly if it feels too thick.

Slice the green pepper and add to the potatoes for the last 3 minutes of cooking, then add the paste for the last 2 minutes, stirring carefully until the potatoes and peppers are coated.

As soon as the sauce hits the hot pan the flavours will be released and your kitchen will be filled with wonderfully inviting aromas.

Sprinkle your Patatas Bravas with sea salt and serve hot with aioli or mayonnaise and other tapas dishes of your choice.

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