Roast Potatoes and Jerusalem Artichokes With Lemon and Sage

I love my Ottolenghi cookbooks. They're filled with absolutely mouth-watering recipes, each and every one you want to make immediately when you see it and the photography is smashing and so creative. 

So, while drooling my way through the hundreth reading of my first Ottolenghi, I came across an intriguing recipe for Roast Potatoes and Jerusalem artichokes with lemon and sage. Jerusalem artichokes? I knew the name, had seen them on menus, but didn't know much else, so I Googled it. Not an artichoke at all and commonly known as sunchoke. So my next trip to Whole Foods, I searched for sunchokes and found a bin of them. Ugly, knobby little guys they were too. If I had not been wearing my glasses I would have thought this was fresh ginger. 

Here's the good news: They taste great...I thought much like an artichoke heart, no matter what everyone says. They are prolific and easy to grow. They are highly nutritious with lots of anti-oxidants. They will keep in the refrigerator for several weeks or in a root cellar all winter.

Sounds good, right? Well, here's the thing..... 

Jerusalem artichokes are a pain to clean. (Mine were. Some are not and can just be washed and sliced.) They must be brushed and scrubbed under running water to remove the sand and dirt that hides among the knobs and folds and while most recipes state they do not need to be peeled, I peeled them as much as I could. 

And one more thing.....I shall put this as delicately as I can by merely saying sunchokes can cause flatulence in some people. Apparently not everybody is similarly cursed, but I regret to say that I am. I was so taken with the taste of sunchokes that I probably ate 4 of them all by myself. Perhaps I was punished for being such a glutton?

Why flatulence? Because sunchokes contain something called inulin. Inulin is a carbohydrate belonging to a class of compounds known as fructans. If you want to get into the chemistry, go HERE.
Chocolate and Zucchini has a lovely recipe for sunchoke soup and some excellent suggestions on how to avoid such problems. 
Simply, she suggests buying the freshest possible sunchokes (by the look of them I would venture to say mine were not) and then parboiling them with a bit of baking soda. (I read this bit too late to do that.)

Did I frighten you off? I hope not, 'cause this dish is mainly about potatoes. My advice is this: eat sunchokes in small portions until you know your own tolerance. Some people are not affected at all and it would be a shame to miss out on this delicious tuber. Moderation is key. One would think I'd have learned that lesson years ago. 

Really, this dish is a delicious combination of which sunchokes are only a small part. The potatoes and sunchokes are roasted in the oven until they are brown and crunchy. Definitely a great side dish with a lovely piece of steak.

Roast Potatoes and Jerusalem Artichokes With Lemon and Sage
From Ottolenghi, The Cookbook

1 pound small potatoes
1 pound Jerusalem artichokes
4 garlic cloves, crushed
50 ml olive oil
2 tablespoons roughly chopped sage
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 lemon
1 cup cherry tomatoes
1 cup kalamata olives, pitted
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Wash the potatoes well, put them in a large saucepan, and cover with plenty of cold, salted water. Bring to a boil and simmer 20 minutes, until half cooked. Drain, cool slightly, and then cut each potato in half lengthwise. Put them on a baking sheet.

Scrub the Jerusalem artichokes, peel if necessary, cut them into slices ¼-inch thick, and add to the potatoes. Add the garlic, olive oil, sage, salt, and pepper. Mix everything with your hands and put in the oven.

Meanwhile, thinly slice the lemon and remove the seeds. After the vegetables have been roasting for about 30 minutes, add the slices of lemon, stir with a wooden spoon, and return to the oven for 20 minutes more. Now add the cherry tomatoes and olives, stir well again, and cook for a further 15 minutes.

Remove from the oven and stir in some of the chopped parsley. Transfer to a serving dish and garnish with the remaining parsley.

Serves 4-6


  1. A wonderful combination and dish!




  2. You are good to warn against possible side effects..I had some at my son-in-laws'..I confess to having never made them..thank you!

  3. i'm a big fan of ottolenghi (and his food)! frankly, i could listen to him talk all day long about anything! just about everything gives me gas, if i'm being brutally honest, but sometimes it's just worth it. :)

  4. All those roasted veggies look scrumptious!

  5. I've never cooked sunchokes at home---but I should because they grow so easily here! This looks like another great Ottolenghi recipe. I just started reading his latest book, Nopi, and can't wait to cook from it.

  6. So nice to hear about another fan of Ottolenghi. Too bad for the unintended consequences!

    I've never tried that recipe, though I tried one for roast potatoes and prunes that was quite delicious. I tried a Julia Child recipe for Jerusalem artichokes once, found it kind of a bland ingredient, never went back to that vegetable. My most recent Ottolenghi was a roast sweet potato dish that was great.

    best... mae at maefood.blogspot.com

  7. Although I've never tried Jerusalem artichokes, their looks alone would have scared me off. They even look hard to clean much less slice. But all's well that ends well because your dish is gorgeous!

  8. You were brave to try them Barbara. They are kind of gnarly. But the final dish looks delicious.

  9. I've never cooked with them, but I will have to now so I can try this lovely recipe!

  10. I must admit... These potatoes have me longing, wanting and drooling ♥


  11. You know, I've never had sunchokes either! I think I have a high tolerance for the problem you stated but sadly my husband does but thanks for the tips! It sounds delicious based on your description, Barbara!



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