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Recipes from Andalucia

By Nick Nutter

Patatas de Pobre

Poor man's potatoes is typically Andalucian. This basic version, potatoes, padron peppers and onions can be used as a base for other vegetables or even oily fish such as tuna. I am sure purists would say that this is not the correct method or the right ingredients, but it does seem that there are lots of variants and we are all for full flavour.

Patatas de Pobre

Preparation Time: 5 mins Cooking Time: 30 mins Total Time: 35 mins
Serves: 6 Difficulty: Easy Suitable for: Vegans


  • 6 medium potatoes - must be firm and waxy potatoes, not the floury type
  • Vegetable stock cube
  • Olive oil for cooking
  • 1 Padron pepper, finely sliced
  • 1 Red pepper finely sliced
  • 2 medium onions finely chopped
  • 2 - 3 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • Salt and pepper
  • Optional
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 2 tbsp wine vinegar
  • 3 tbsp water


Peel and then slice the potatoes into reasonably chunky slices, about 1/2 cm thick.  To give them extra flavour, bring a pan of vegetable stock to the boil and then plunge in the potatoes briefly just to give them a bit if that stock flavour.  Once the potatoes just start to soften at the edges, about 5 minutes, drain them and set them to one side.  Do not boil them until they are cooked!

In a large frying pan, heat a good quantity of olive oil; you want around 1cm of depth of oil in the pan.  When the oil is hot, gently add the potato slices and then coat them thoroughly in the oil.  Add the pepper, onions and garlic and cook over a gentle heat until all the potatoes are almost falling apart and some onions are turning brown: around 15 minutes or so. Add salt and pepper to taste. Only stir sparingly or you will end up with potato mush and peppers.

This is the traditional, basic, Patatas de Pobre. You can eat it as it is or you can add all sorts of ingredients on top or you can use it as a base when roasting meat and poultry so that it takes up the meat juices.

To add a burst of flavour.

In a small bowl mix together the paprika, cumin, vinegar and water.  Once the potatoes, pepper and onion have cooked, add the vinegar and spice mix and stir gently but thoroughly and then leave to cook for a short time more until the vinegar mix has been absorbed.