Papas Arrugadas (Canarian Wrinkly Potatoes)

Papas Arrugadas is an authentic vegan dish from the Canarian Islands. The Canarians cook their potatoes in salty water (that’s what makes them wrinkly) and serve their papas with a sauce made of pepper and garlic.

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Papas-Arrugadas

What is Papas Arrugadas?

Papas arrugadas are considered a signature recipe of the Canarian Islands. This island group in the Atlantic Ocean also goes by the name of ‘the Canarians’ and is an autonomous part of Spain.

‘Papas Arrugadas’ translates into ‘Wrinkly Potatoes’. What makes these potatoes wrinkly, is that you cook them in very salty water. In the old days, people used sea water. Nowadays people just throw a large amount of salt in the cooking pan. Papas arrugadas is served as a side dish and vegan by default. It comes with a sauce made predominantly of chili pepper and garlic sauce.

Not all potatoes wrinkle well 

The Canarians make this dish with their own potato breed: papa negra from Tenerife or papa bonita from Gran Canaria. These potato types wrinkle when cooked in very salty water.

Depending on the type of potato you use, yours might or might not wrinkle when cooked. We failed to buy a type of potato that got all nice and wrinkly. No sad faces though –  the absence of wrinkliness doesn’t affect the taste.

Ingredients

For 2 servings

We will give you the recipe for both red pepper sauce (Mojo Rojo) and green pepper sauce (Mojo Verde). One sauce is sufficient in quantity. So pick one sauce, half the ingredients and make both, or prepare yourself with sufficient leftovers to the next day as a sandwich spread. Yum.

For the potatoes

  • 4 small potatoes
  • ½ cup of of salt

For the Mojo Rojo

  • 3 red peppers (point, sweet or bell)
  • 4 cayenne peppers or chilies (you can always take fewer if you don’t like spicy)
  • 1 head of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 15 milliliter of olive oil
  • 10 milliliter of vinegar

For the Mojo Verde

  • 3 green peppers (point, sweet or bell)
  • 2 bunches of cilantro
  • 2 bunches of parsley
  • 1 head of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 15 milliliter of olive oil
  • 10 milliliter of vinegar

Kitchen utensils

  • Mortar and pestle (or food processor)
  • Cooking pan

How to make Papas Arrugadas

Prep: 5 min. | Cook: 20 min. | Total: 25 min.

How to make the Wrinkly Potatoes

  1. Wash the potatoes thoroughly under water. Don’t peel. 
  1. Put the potatoes with water in a cooking pan. The potatoes need to be just under water. Add ½ cup of salt.
  1. Cook until done. The potatoes are done when you can easily prick a fork into them. The exact cooking time depends on the type of potato you use.
  1. Rinse the potatoes and put them back into the dry pan with the lid on. Put aside. 

How to make the Mojo Rojo

If you want your sauce to be smooth, use a food processor. If you like it artisan (or if you don’t have a food processor): use a mortar and pestle.

  1. Peel the garlic. 

    If you use a mortar and pestle, go to step 2. If you use a food processor, add all ingredients from step 1-5 to the food processor and go to step 6.
  1. Put the cloves into the mortar and crush them. 
  1. Cut the cayenne peppers roughly and add to the mortar. Crush together with the garlic.
  1. Cut the red peppers roughly and add to the mortar. Keep crushing. If pestling is too hard, add a tablespoon of olive oil to the mortar. 
  1. Transfer everything to a glass or bowl and add the cumin and salt.
  1. Add the vinegar. Then add the olive oil by bits and keep on stirring. If the structure of the sauce is to your liking, stop adding olive oil. 

How to make the Mojo Verde

If you want your sauce to be smooth, use a food processor. If you like it artisan (or if you don’t have a food processor): use a mortar and pestle.

Crushing the garlic for the Mojo Verde
  1. Peel the garlic. 

    If you use a mortar and pestle, go to step 2. If you use a food processor, add all ingredients from step 1-5 to the food processor and go to step 6..
  1. Put the cloves in the mortar and crush them. 
  1. Cut the green peppers roughly and add to the mortar. Keep crushing.
    If pestling is too hard, add a tablespoon of the olive oil to the mortar. 
  1. Chop up the cilantro and parsley as small as possible.
  1. Transfer everything to a glass or bowl and add the cumin and salt.
  1. Add the vinegar. Then add the olive oil by bits and keep on stirring. If the structure of the sauce is to your liking, stop adding olive oil. 


Serve the potatoes and sauce together and don’t forget to eat them :-).

Papas-Arrugadas

Summary

Recipe: Papas Arrugadas 
Country: Spain
Prep: 5 min.
Cook: 20 min.
Total: 25 min.
Ingredients: potato, red pepper, chili, garlic, parsley, cilantro, cumin, olive oil, vinegar
Type of meal: side dish

Leave your comment

So, how about those Papas Arrugadas? Did you make them? If you leave a comment below, it would really make our day :-).

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