Potatoes, especially mashed potatoes, automatically become a backdrop for do-it-yourself fun projects. They so readily enhance additives like lobster meat, blue cheese, chopped greens, nuts, fruits and other vegetables. Restaurants, in particular, tend to compete in this area.
Thousands of varieties of potatoes exist, but the commonest used in the U.S. are Yukon Golds, russets, reds and whites. None are eaten raw. They are also members of the nightshade tribe along with tomatoes, eggplants, peppers and tomatillos.
Potatoes are a favorite comfort food in almost all cultures and
harvested somewhere in the world all year long. China currently grows the most followed by India. The crop is the world’s fourth-largest after corn, wheat and rice.
Early Peruvian Inca Indians were credited with breeding hundreds of varieties of potatoes between 8,000 and 5,000 BCE. This crop has the ability to grow at high, cold altitudes, and they devised a way to freeze-dry them for prolonged storage.
By the 1840s , after potatoes moved from South America into Europe over to the United Kingdom, a major outbreak of potato blight, a plant disease, swept through Europe, especially striking Ireland’s poor class resulting in a million people starving to death or illness and another million fleeing to North America.
Potatoes are rich in vitamin C, manganese and potassium. They take a rap for being fattening, but the truth is a medium potato contains only 110 calories. If care is taken to make its toppings simple, more potatoes can be enjoyed by dieters.
Whenever possible, resist purchasing potatoes in plastic bags and select each separately carefully avoiding bruises, lumpiness, cuts, sprouting, spongy surfaces and green spots.
Store potatoes in a sack or paper bag in a cool, dark, ventilated place, not in the refrigerator. Mature potatoes can last for up to two months, if properly stored. Potatoes do not freeze well.
- Parmesan potatoes
- Potato chips
- Potato pancakes
- Potato salad
- Potato skins
- Salad Nicoise
- Scalloped potatoes with cheese
- Potato Soup
- Stir fry
- Twice-baked potatoes
Below are three foodsites with potato recipes.