Potato information

Yield: 1 servings

Measure Ingredient

A humble tuber, the potato was keenly cultivated by the Incas thousand of years ago. Like the tomato and eggplant, the potato belongs to the nightshade family which was considered throughout Europe be to poisonous. Instrumental in its European acceptance was Sir WAlter Raleigh who planted potatoes on his Irish property. The rest, they say, is history. The potato flourished and commands respect as a complete and nourishing food.

A potato low in moisture, low in sugar with high starch, is termed floury. Floury specimens bake and mash perfectly and will render golden coloured chips or roast potatoes. Because of their low sugar they are harder to brown and tend to collapse with boiled. one the other hand a waxy potato high in moisture with low starch, holds its shape and remains firm when boiled. These potato varieties are best for salads or scalloped.

Potato Shapes Our tuber assumes some facsinating shapes. Generally speaking the shape often relates to the starch content. Fortunely this makes identifying the use easier. Ovals Long oval- Long and slighly rounded they include the Russet varieties and the New Potatoes. Low moisture and high starch makes them floury and therefore superior baking potatoes that are excellent for French fries, crisping and roasting. Examples: agria (yellow), desiree (red) Short oval- With more moisture and less starch their waxy quality produce good boiling potatos. They are usually a good all purposse potato. Ex: bildatar, draga, fianna, fresia, ilam hardy, iwa, jersy benner, nadine, peru peru, rua, sebego, stroma Rounds Red and White- They ar a waxy potato and often referred to as boiling potatoes. Good roasters and some are great for mashing. (Rima is a good New Zealand example) Kidney shaped Not so common and obviously shaped like a lambs kidney, these waxy potatoes are boulers and not suitable for frying or crisping. In New Zealand Cliff Kidney occasionaly appears at the greengrocer.

Storage Store potatoes in a cool dark, well ventilated place for up to six weeks. use new potatoes within 4 days of purchase.

Refrigerating potatoes causes them to sweeten and turn dark when cooked. Warm temperatures encourage sprouting and shrivelling.

From: Cuisine NZ, July 1994 Posted by: Joell Abbott 7/94 reposted 5/95 Submitted By JOELL ABBOTT On 05-04-95

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