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Potatoes Fondantes

By Jacques Pépin From Moveable Feast Season 59, Ep.64
Scott Phillips

Servings: four to six.

A nonstick skillet is crucial so the potatoes don’t stick to the pan as the liquid evaporates.


  • 2 lb. baby Yukon Gold or Red Bliss potatoes (20 to 25 potatoes, 1-1/2 to 1-3/4 inches in diameter)
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary
  • 2 cups homemade or low-salt chicken broth
  • 2 Tbs. good-quality extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbs. unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt (less if the broth is salty)
  • 1 to 2 Tbs. thinly sliced fresh chives
  • Fleur de sel or other sea salt for serving (optional)

Nutritional Information

  • Nutritional Sample Size based on six servings
  • Calories (kcal) : 190
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 60
  • Fat (g): 7
  • Saturated Fat (g): 2
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 1
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 4
  • Cholesterol (mg): 5
  • Sodium (mg): 430
  • Carbohydrates (g): 27
  • Fiber (g): 2
  • Protein (g): 5


  • Trim the potatoes of any eyes or damaged areas and wash well in cold water. Arrange as many potatoes as will fit in one layer in a 10-inch nonstick skillet (there should be a little room to spare; save any extra potatoes for another use). Add the rosemary, broth, oil, butter, and salt. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium, cover the pan but leave the lid a tad ajar, and boil until the potatoes are tender when pierced with a fork, about 20 min. The liquid should still halfway surround the potatoes; if it doesn’t, add more broth or water until it does
    Put unpeeled baby potatoes in a nonstick skillet so they’re almost but not quite touching; they’ll need the wiggle room later when they’re cracked.

  • Remove the pan from the heat and press on each potato with a 1/4-cup measure just until it cracks open. Set the pan over medium-high heat and cook, uncovered, until all the liquid has evaporated and the potatoes have browned on one side, about 10 min. Gently turn the potatoes and brown the other side, another 4 to 5 min.
    Press firmly on the potatoes to crack them; this helps them absorb more broth and ensures a creamy, moist interior. Then continue boiling, but now uncovered.

  • Remove the pan from the heat and let the potatoes rest for 5 min. before transferring them to a serving platter. Sprinkle with the chives and serve immediately, passing the fleur de sel so diners can sprinkle some on if they want.
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Reviews (9 reviews)

  • user-4676750 | 03/14/2015

    be careful when your smooshing potatoes and the potato slips and the boiling hot broth comes up and burns both your arms and almost baby who was standing on floor nearby

  • Thecla | 12/30/2011

    Excellant recipe, I make it frequently, its so easy. My only advice is to be carefull of the salt, sometime the chicken broth is salty enough.

  • Thecla | 12/30/2011

    Excellant recipe, I make it frequently, its so easy. My only advice is to be carefull of the salt, sometime the chicken broth is salty enough.

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