Roast potatoes. They’re a bit of a religion here, especially at Christmastime. They have a special, chunky shape, and are brown and crispy and potatoey and hot. I but wasn’t aware of the extent of the obsession until I read this article in the Guardian that tried them 12 different ways, starting with allegedly gold-standard recipes by four god-like chefs: Nigella Lawson, Delia Smith, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, and Heston Blumenthal. The variables were type of potato (Britain has a variety of trains of white potato, such as Maris Piper, Desiree, and King Edward), fat (once again with the gratuitous animal fat, preferably goose), oven temp, parboiling method, and – believe it or not – whether you shake the pan partway through cooking. The funny thing was that the test cook recommended that elements from three of the chefs – but not Nigella – would produce the best roastie, but then he didn’t take it to the next level and actually try the combination. Though he did say that groundnut (peanut) oil worked better than the traditional goose fat, which you buy in a jar for a couple of pounds, and is hard to find outside of the holiday season.