They're all over the place in England. Every pub and restaurant we went to devoted a section of the menu to them, along with a choice of toppings: grated cheddar, baked beans, tuna, cole slaw or plain with butter, salt and pepper.
My aunt Janey often made them for our dinners in Cornwall—as a side to roast chicken or sausages—and we all loved them so much, so she agreed to share the basic recipe...
"Preheat oven to 200C/400F. Cut a cross on the potatoes. Put the potatoes at the top of the oven—straight on the rack, not a baking tray. Cook 1-2 hours (usually closer to 2). When they feel crunchy on the outside, pull the rack out, cut the potatoes open again to release the steam, then put them back into the oven. The major important thing is NOT to turn the oven down as they go soggy and lose their crunch. After ten minutes, serve immediately with shedloads of butter, salt and pepper. Perfect."Have you ever had these? Do you have them all the time? Is this a no-brainer to you? They're really different from the ones we make in the microwave! Any other toppings you love?
P.S. Crunchy roast potatoes aren't half bad either:)
(Photos by Yossy Arefi for Cup of Jo)