Timecrimes is a twisty, turny, time-traveling thriller written and directed by Nacho Vigalondo (who also costars in the film as the young scientist). The Spanish film stars Karra Elejalde as Hector, a loving yet somewhat bumbling husband who becomes entangled in a time loop. As time progresses, and then repeats, he desperately tries to both force the outcome and evade mounting misfortune.

Often time travel films are both intriguing yet infuriating in that they leave questions, paradoxes and holes, yet this one manages to keep the story focused and neat. It’s satisfying both as a narrative that conscientiously wraps up all its loose ends, but also as a character study of how Hector evolves as a person, paradoxically (it’s time travel, of course) in the matter of a few hours. And a few hours. And a few hours.

A note, whilst cooking I realized that this recipe itself has some light spoilers…though not overt, eat at your own risk!



[Witchy Kitchen] Once, Twice, Thrice Baked Garlic and Lemon Potatoes Inspired by TIMECRIMES


When thinking up a recipe, I started philosophizing about my oven as a time machine. Materials go in, and emerge transformed. Playing with the input and settings can change the outcome. Countless weeknights I have thrown in veggies to roast, how many times, one or a hundred, time is a flat circle, it’s all the same. And oh how I wish I could go back in time when I forget things a little too long (Who among us has not burnt things to a crisp? Who?). This recipe puts raw materials into the machine three times, and they emerge the same, yet changed – and delicious!

Twice-baked potatoes are the standard, but please consider thrice baked potatoes. The extra step yields extra crispy potato skins beyond what you can achieve through two trips through the time machine, and they perfectly complement the texture of the rich, creamy filling. As for the filling, I always love to incorporate local flavor to reference a film, and this one is no different. It’s a Spanish profile, flavored with lemon, parsley, and a full head of luscious roasted garlic. Though Spain has no shortage of iconic potato dishes (patatas bravas, Spanish tortilla, and world-famous roasted potatoes), this is a fun spin.

Additionally the garnishes add some time traveling flair. Potato 1 is unadulterated. Potato 2 is draped in roasted carrot bandages. And Potato 3, sprinkled with smoked paprika, looks a little worse for the wear but is probably the best of all.



[Witchy Kitchen] Once, Twice, Thrice Baked Garlic and Lemon Potatoes Inspired by TIMECRIMES

Garlic and Lemon Thrice Baked Potatoes

  • 3 large russet potatoes
  • 1 large carrot
  • 1 head garlic
  • 1 shallot
  • olive oil
  • sea salt
  • large handful Italian parsley, finely chopped
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 5 tablespoons sour cream
  • smoked paprika

Roast the potatoes by your desired method – since you are going to crisp up the skin, either oven or microwave is fine. Cool and set aside.

Meanwhile, heat the oven to 400°;. Thinly slice the carrot into long strips with a mandolin. Toss with olive oil and a sprinkle of sea salt and arrange on a parchment lined baking sheet in a single layer. Cut the top third off the head of garlic, drizzle with olive oil, and wrap in aluminum foil. Cut the shallot into chunks, toss with olive oil and sea salt, and place in a small oven safe dish (I used a pie plate).

Put all vegetables in the oven and bake until golden (stir the shallot occasionally). The carrots will be done first (15 minutes or so), the shallot next (20-25 minutes), and the garlic last (45 minutes or so). Set the carrot aside, finely chop the shallot, and when the garlic is cool enough to handle, squeeze it out of the papers. Cut the roasted potatoes in half lengthwise and scoop the insides into a large bowl. Arrange the skins skin-side up on a baking rack on a baking sheet, brush with olive oil, and sprinkle with sea salt. Return to the 400°; oven and cook until golden.

While the skins are cooking, mash the potato with shallot, garlic, parsley, lemon zest, sour cream and salt to taste. Mix well, but don’t overmix. Take the skins out of the oven, flip, and fill them evenly with filling. Return to the oven and bake until golden brown. Leave two of the potatoes plain, drape two of the potatoes with roasted carrot strips, and garnish the remaining two with smoked paprika.


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[Witchy Kitchen] Once, Twice, Thrice Baked Garlic and Lemon Potatoes Inspired by TIMECRIMES