1 1/2 pounds new potatoes such as Yellow Finns, Bintje or fingerlings (no larger than 2-inches in diameter
About 1 cup creme fraiche
3 or 4 tablespoons cracked coriander seeds (see below)
3 or 4 tablespoons snipped fresh chives (optional)
1 stick unsalted butter (optional)
Preheat the oven to 400 F. Spread a 1/2 inch-thick layer of kosher salt in a large, 2- or 3-inch deep ovenproof pan or dish. Nestle the potatoes in the salt, spaced about 1/2 inch apart. Cover completely with salt. Bake until tender, about 35 to 40 minutes. To test for doneness, dig out one of the potatoes and press; it should split open easily.
Let the dish cool 5 minutes before serving. Place little bowls of unsalted butter, creme fraiche, cracked coriander seeds and snipped chives on a platter or tray to make them easy to pass.
Place the dish of potatoes buried in salt on the table (on a trivet) with a serving spoon; pass little bowls of unsalted butter or creme fraiche, cracked coriander seeds, and snipped fresh chives on the side for guest to dress them as they like. This is also a great way to dress simple boiled potatoes. Leftover cracked coriander makes a surprising, instant seasoning for all sorts of dishes.