Grilling, particularly over a wood fire, gives an especially nice flavor to thin-skinned potatoes. Since they are partially cooked ahead of time, the potatoes can be finished on the grill alongside whatever other foods are being grilled. Serves 4

8 new potatoes, washed, unpeeled 2 Tbsp. olive oil Salt and freshly ground pepper 2 to 3 Tbsp. herb Aioli (make your own: mix together mayonnaise, minced garlic, and chopped fresh herbs of choice)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place the potatoes in a shallow baking dish; rub them with one tablespoon of oil and season them lightly with salt and pepper. Bake until just tender, about 30 minutes. Let cool (this step can be done a day or more ahead of time; keep the cooked potatoes refrigerated). Split the potatoes lengthwise and lay 4 halves in a row on the cutting board, cut side down. Run a thin skewer horizontally through the middle of the potatoes. Repeat with the remaining potatoes, making four skewers in all. Rub the potatoes, especially the cut sides, with a little more oil and sprinkle on a little more salt and pepper. Grill over a moderate fire, starting with the cut side down against the grill, until golden brown and slightly crisp on the surface, 3 to 5 min. per side. Remove the potatoes from the skewers onto a plate and serve with a mound of Herb Aioli on the side, or place a skewer on each plate with a spoonful of aioli.

from Contemporary Italian by Robert Helstrom