From America's Test Kitchen Season 7: Meatloaf Dinner
Skillet-roasted potatoes often cook up unevenly, with a mixture of scorched and pallid potatoes. We wanted to be able to make truly outstanding skillet-roasted potatoes, as good as oven-roasted—extra-crisp on the outside and moist and creamy on the inside, evenly browned, and never greasy. This would be the recipe we’d turn to when we craved roasted potatoes but there was no room in the oven for the conventional kind.
The solution turned out to be choosing the right potato and cutting it uniformly. Red Bliss potatoes, cut in half if small or quartered if medium, offered a great crust and a moist interior, thanks to their high moisture content. We rinsed the cut potatoes to remove surface starch, which otherwise caused the potatoes to stick to the pan and inhibited browning. Olive oil added flavor and richness to the dish. The winning cooking technique was to first brown the potatoes over high heat, then cover and finish cooking over low heat. This allowed the insides to cook through while the outsides stayed crisp.
Serves 3 to 4
For even cooking and proper browning, the potatoes must be cooked in a single layer and should not be crowded in the pan, so be sure to use a heavy-duty 12-inch skillet. A nonstick skillet simplifies cleanup but is not essential.