These crispy smashed potatoes with avocado hemp aïoli make the perfect addition to your plant-powered hors d’oeuvres spread! Fair warning: These are addictive, so you might want to make extra.
Surely I am not alone in feeling as though 2019 flew by. I am finding it hard to believe that the decade is coming to a close. It seems like just yesterday that I celebrated my 15th birthday, and now here I am having just turned 25. The 2010s held many lessons, struggles, and wins. I ended harmful relationships, made space for new ones, and learned how to set healthy boundaries.
I learned to enjoy cooking, eating, and exercising without the strictures imposed by diet culture. I took a huge step outside of my comfort zone and moved across the country to British Columbia in 2014, and it turned out to be one of my best decisions of the decade. The people I met, the experiences we shared, and the lessons I learned are ones that I will carry with me through the next decade and beyond. I know that I will be moving again this year, a prospect that fills me with hope and excitement.
I also made more than my fair share of mistakes over the past ten years. Early in the decade, my perfectionism spiraled out of control and manifested in an eating disorder accompanied by overachieving in academics and sport. Following this bout, I swung in the opposite direction, becoming apathetic towards my studies, quitting running for a time, and living on the edge. Gradually, I have found more of an equilibrium, but I know that I will need to be conscious of my tendency to go to extremes in this next decade of my life.
I have also struggled with commitment, often erroneously believing that there is something better just around the bend. As a result, I have given up on romantic relationships long before I should have, and I have yet to finish my undergrad. Life looks a lot different at 25 than I had imagined that it would, but I am slowly learning to be okay with that, and to trust that everything that has happened up to this point has held a valuable lesson.
I think that it is beneficial for all of us to take an honest look at ourselves as this decade comes to a close–to recognize how far we have come, and to take stock of the things that we might need to work on. I am proud not of any tangible accomplishment over the past ten years, but of the work that I have done to make myself a stronger, more capable, and resilient person. I am happy that I have learned how to listen to my heart, to say a firm “no” to that which doesn’t feel right, and to set healthy boundaries. I am thankful for the relationships that I have with my immediate family and my chosen family.
And yet, I am a fallible human who still has enough self work to last a lifetime. I need to learn to commit–to let go of the hope that there will always be someone or something better. I need to continue working on self confidence. I need to stop downplaying my passions and accomplishments and recognize that what I have done thus far in my life has worth and meaning, even if I don’t have credentials after my name and a huge paycheck to show for it.
I’m raising a glass, in spirit, to all of you dear readers. May you find peace in your daily life, joy in the simple things, and freedom from suffering, in 2020 and beyond.
And now, to a very special recipe that I created to celebrate the new year in style. At our house, we love to ring in the new year by creating a spread of vegan appetizers and going to town. We usually do cauliflower wings, quesadillas, some variety of raw or cooked salad, and potatoes. Somehow, most of my life passed me by before I tasted my first smashed potato. I would wager that smashed potatoes are one of the best recipe inventions of the century, so you can imagine that my first bite resulted in a “Where have you beeeeeeen all my life?” (With apologies to my neighbours… I can be a little on the loud side.)
how to make crispy smashed potatoes:
If you’re new to this smashed potato concept, allow me to briefly explain. You boil whole potatoes (with the peel on) for about 20 minutes, and then transfer them to a baking sheet where you ‘smash’ them with the bottom of a glass or measuring cup so that they measure about an inch in thickness. The peels will break to reveal the soft flesh.
Next, you drizzle them with oil and sprinkle them with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Pop them into a hot oven until they get nice and crispy.
Part of the allure of these smashed potatoes definitely comes from the sauce, and my avocado hemp aïoli is the perfect pairing. It’s a blend of avocado, hemp, lemon juice, garlic, sea salt, pepper, parsley, and a dash of maple syrup to balance the flavours. Once blended in the food processor, it resembles a thick and creamy ranch dip with an uplifting green hue. It’s hard to decide if the crispy smashed potatoes or the avocado hemp aïoli are more addictive–you’ll have to let me know in the comments!
Whether you make it for a New Year’s Eve event tonight, or you wait and make this on another dark and cozy night in January, I hope that you love these potatoes. They fill you up in every way. <3 If you make them, you’re welcome to leave a comment with a rating below, and/or tag me on Instagram (@upbeet.kitchen and #upbeetkitchen) to let me know how you enjoyed them. 🙂Print
These crispy smashed potatoes with avocado hemp dipping sauce are addictive. You’ve been warned!
- 10 medium organic yellow potatoes
- 3 tbsp avocado oil, extra virgin olive oil, or grapeseed oil
- Salt, freshly ground black pepper, and garlic powder
Avocado Hemp Aïoli:
- ½ cup hemp hearts (also called hulled hemp seeds)
- 1 ripe pitted avocado
- ¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- ½ cup fresh parsley
- 1 tsp pure maple syrup
- ½ tsp fine sea salt
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- ⅓ cup filtered water, plus more as needed
- Wash the potatoes thoroughly. Place in a large soup pot and cover with 2 inches of water. Bring the water to a boil over high heat, and then turn down the heat to medium-high. Simmer the potatoes for 20 minutes, or until fork-tender. Drain in a colander and let them cool for 10 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Lightly grease a large baking sheet and transfer the cooled potatoes to it. ‘Smash’ the potatoes by pressing down on each with the bottom of a drinking glass or metal measuring cup. They should be about 1 inch thick after smashing. It’s okay if some of them break.
- Drizzle a scant teaspoon of oil over each smashed potato and sprinkle with generous amounts each sea salt, ground black pepper, and garlic powder.
- Bake the potatoes for 20-25 minutes, or until nice and crispy around the edges.
- While the potatoes are in the oven, make the avocado hemp aïoli: Place the hemp, avocado, lemon juice, garlic, parsley, maple syrup, salt, pepper, and water in a food processor fitted with the ‘S’ blade. Process until ultra smooth, scraping down sides with a spatula as needed and adding more water, if desired, until a thick consistency similar to the texture of ranch dip is achieved.
- Serve the potatoes with the aïoli.
This recipe is inspired by Oh She Glows.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 45 minutes
- Category: Appetizer
- Method: Roast
- Cuisine: Vegan
Keywords: vegan smashed potatoes, crispy smashed potatoes recipe, avocado aïoli, hemp aïoli, vegan aïoli recipe