Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Recommended Posts

Today I enjoyed the finest handful of potatoes I've ever eaten. Nothing special, just a new white-skinned potato. Tiny in size, maybe an inch in diameter, a little more, on average. But they were soooo good!

The secret, of course, was that these didn't come from storage. Not even a day! I bought them at a small, neighborhood, seasonal farmers' market in Philadelphia just three blocks from my house. The vendor, Earl Livengood (a regular at the Reading Terminal Market and other city farmers' markets) told me he dug them up this morning. I believe him. I treated them simply: after scrubbing (but leaving on the skin) I placed the 'taters in cold, heavily salted water and turned on the heat; once the pot came to a boil, I let them cook for another 10-12 minutes 'til tender; after drainining, I threw in a sufficient quantity of butter (that exact amount is in the eye of the beholder) and served. No need for additional salt or other seasonings, not even fresh black pepper. OMG they were incredible. It was like I had never tasted potatoes before.

What's the best potato you've ever had?

Bob Libkind aka "rlibkind"

Robert's Market Report

Link to post
Share on other sites

Many years ago, as a teenager, I had the opportunity to dine at Sans Souci in Toronto. I don't remember the entree, but I remember it was accompanied by a single potato that was unadorned and about the size of a large marble. It was just slightly sweet, tasted quite a bit like good clean dirt, and was one of the most magical things - potato-wise or otherwise - I've ever speared with a fork.

I've never forgotten that moment, and I've never eaten such a lovely potato-y potato since. Thank you for making me remindful of it.

Edited by Melianne (log)
Link to post
Share on other sites

It was in Denmark many, many years ago. My brother-in-law took us to a very nice restaurant somewhere along the coast and we had fish (the name translated to "red spot") and these incredible tiny new potatoes. They were served simply with nothing but butter and they were a revelation. I have forgotten the name of the restaurant and the name of the town where it was located but the taste of those potatoes is something I will never forget.

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

Link to post
Share on other sites

I seems impossible to find a good potatoe inless you grow it yourself here in Oklahoma. I love New potatoes. My grandfather used to get fresh hailbut off the coast in Seattle and grill it in real butter, and plain boiled new pototoes with a little butter......just heaven!

"I eat fat back, because bacon is too lean"

-overheard from a 105 year old man

"The only time to eat diet food is while waiting for the steak to cook" - Julia Child

Link to post
Share on other sites
It was in Denmark many, many years ago.  My brother-in-law took us to a very nice restaurant somewhere along the coast and we had fish (the name translated to "red spot") ...

Would that be rødspette -- a plaice righteye?

Link to post
Share on other sites
It was in Denmark many, many years ago.  My brother-in-law took us to a very nice restaurant somewhere along the coast and we had fish (the name translated to "red spot") ...

Would that be rødspette -- a plaice righteye?

Yes, I believe it was. The fish was extraordinary but it was truly the potatoes that won my heart and tastebuds. :rolleyes:

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

Link to post
Share on other sites

I am waiting with bait on my breath :hmmm: for my potatoes to be ready to dig. The flavor of a new potato just out of the garden is incredible, and so different from any tater you buy in grocery store.

Kinda like the difference between a real tomato still warm from the sun and the red styrofoam strip mined "tomatoes" from the produce aisle.

Never tasted a real new potato? Next time you have a sprouty potato under the sink, bury it in a big pot of dirt. Put it outside in the sun, let the plant grow til the flowers begin to bloom, and then turn it out and harvest 5 or 6 six little potatoes.

Boiled and buttered is good, but boiled til almost tender and then crisped in bacon fat is even better.

Or boil them til they are almost done, and then add the fresh peas you just picked and shelled. Cook til the peas are done, drain, and put in as much butter as your conscience will allow. Eat with a spoon, so you don't miss a single pea. :wub:

sparrowgrass
Link to post
Share on other sites

Welcome to CKatCook to the eG boards. At last, another Oklahoma person. NOw I don't feel so alone. And I agree that the best spuds are the ones you grow yourself. And with grilled halibut, that sounds great. It seems the only local fish available is catfish. Not my first choice.

It is good to be a BBQ Judge.  And now it is even gooder to be a Steak Cookoff Association Judge.  Life just got even better.  Woo Hoo!!!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes...I hate the lack of availablity of good fish. I am spoiled for the fresh stuff. Even the produce here is not that great in my opinion. If you have any good suggestions PM me with them please!

Now what I would love to try is fingerling potatoes....I have not been able to find them anywhere here!

"I eat fat back, because bacon is too lean"

-overheard from a 105 year old man

"The only time to eat diet food is while waiting for the steak to cook" - Julia Child

Link to post
Share on other sites

When I was attending the CIA in Hyde Park NY there was a class and the instructor asked the class to descibe you favorite meal or food. I thought about this for a long time. At the time I had not experianced a lot of fine dining. I had lived in Japan for the past three years (where I had sushi for the first time) while in the Navy but my answer still holds true. I am just a farm boy at heart.

I grew up on a farm in the middle of Kansas and we always had a garden. I can remember going out at about 8:30 at night, when it had started to cool and my father would turn the potatoes with the tractor. My brother, sister, cousins and myself would run behind the tractor and grab all of the potatoes that we could and put them into big baskets. Big ones, little ones, soft dirt in between your toes and underneath your finger nails. We would be covered in dirt by the time we were done and we all had smiles on our faces.

Mom would wash the potatoes and cook them with ham hocks, onions and fresh snap beans from the garden. Smash the potatoes lots of butter and S&P. A big pan of cornbread with butter and honey on it. It is one of the strongest memories from childhood. Still bringing a smile to my face wishing for days past.

Potatoes should taste like dirt. :blink: Fresh dirt. :huh: Of the earth where they have come from and the love that it took to cook them. It is still my favorite summer dish to have when I visit my parents, along with the home grown tomatoes and corn.

It is easier to change a menu than a growing season.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Potatoes should taste like dirt.  :blink:  Fresh dirt.  :huh:  Of the earth where they have come from and the love that it took to cook them.  It is still my favorite summer dish to have when I visit my parents, along with the home grown tomatoes and corn.

I love this............ :wub:

Link to post
Share on other sites
Potatoes should taste like dirt.  :blink:   Fresh dirt.  :huh:  Of the earth where they have come from and the love that it took to cook them.   It is still my favorite summer dish to have when I visit my parents, along with the home grown tomatoes and corn.

I love this............ :wub:

Thanks, I have an overwelming amount of passion for good fresh food. I love your quote :rolleyes:

It is easier to change a menu than a growing season.

Link to post
Share on other sites

A potato I have grown quite a few times in England is a very old variety. A 'First Early' called Epicure (goes back to the 1890's). Quite round white and, when fresh dug the skin will come off with the rub of a thumb.

The taste is incomparable.

Clickety

Now, here we enjoy Jersy Royals, which are pretty good, just with butter and not too long cooked.

edited to change imcomparable

Edited by naguere (log)

Martial.2,500 Years ago:

If pale beans bubble for you in a red earthenware pot, you can often decline the dinners of sumptuous hosts.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Potatoes should taste like dirt.  :blink:  Fresh dirt.  :huh:  Of the earth where they have come from and the love that it took to cook them.  It is still my favorite summer dish to have when I visit my parents, along with the home grown tomatoes and corn.

Love this..There is nothing like fresh veggies... :smile:

"I eat fat back, because bacon is too lean"

-overheard from a 105 year old man

"The only time to eat diet food is while waiting for the steak to cook" - Julia Child

Link to post
Share on other sites

Backpacking through Ecuador about fifteen years ago, I one night had an absolutely disgusting dish of guinea pig and unidentifiable tubes. I ate as much as I could stomach (like six bites) and realized I'd have to tank up on quinoa and the spuds. But the potaotes.... OMG the taties... They were purple-skinned with the slightest lavender hue to the flesh, and they were served in a big bowl with some salt and some ground chilis. Butter was essentially unavailable there, but I sprinkled some lime juice on them and I wish ta God I had some right now. Mashed Idaho russets aren't too bad either.

This whole love/hate thing would be a lot easier if it was just hate.

Bring me your finest food, stuffed with your second finest!

Link to post
Share on other sites
...Big ones, little ones,  soft dirt in between your toes and underneath your finger nails.

...

Potatoes should taste like dirt.

Yes, yes, yes! As much as I love mashed potatoes, and tinker about with garlic, parsley, butter, sour cream, chives or whatever performance enhancing additives one might give a spud, there's nothing like this. Growth of the soil, baby. That honestly brought tears to my eyes.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Tiny French Fingerlings fresh from the garden. Add petit pois or haricot verte just before the potatoes are tender. Drain and finish with fresh cream. I could make a meal of them any day.

Link to post
Share on other sites

My grandmother grew red potatos,or new potatos, my entire childhood. It seems like we always had them on the table. When red potatos started becoming popular I never understood the fascination with them, they were just what we always had. But the ones from Granny's garden were always better. Maybe that's why I didn't understand the fascination because the ones in restaurants were dull. I love the quote that says they taste like "dirt, fresh dirt". They do and I have tasted fresh dirt! But it's better with butter.

Link to post
Share on other sites

The red-skinned new potatoes my mother used to cook when I was young. They were so good. I don't know if she just got them from the supermarket or from a farmstand. That was on Long Island (NY) and there used to be lots of potatoes grown there.

The mashed potatoes I made one Thanksgiving from potatoes I'd grown--a storage potato called Corola (according to Territorial Seed Co, this potato was bred in Germany)--a waxy Yukon Gold/Yellow Finn type but w/its own flavor and some Rose Finn Apples--a fingerling potato. The mashed potatoes tasted great and seemed so rich although I don't add cream. Even my brother-in-law, who's sort of a picky eater and mashed potato aficianado, liked them. I think that was the first time I'd grown potatoes.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Mmm, so hard to choose - I think my favourite is the Pink Fir Apple. Very knobbly potato with great flavour. But I love La Ratte and Jersey Royal too. Can't get Jersey Royals in the States of course but I've seen La Rattes in the Union Square greenmarket.

Storage potatoes do have their uses--simply can't make chips from new potatoes (yes chips! So degraded by fast food, but real, freshly fried ones--mmm), and I do love fluffy, starchy mash. King Edwards make the best mashed potato IMO. And much as I used to complain about Idaho Russets being low in flavour, I've come to miss them now that I can't get them. Nothing else bakes up in quite the same way--the Russet has perfect baked-potato skin.

Link to post
Share on other sites

The best potatoes I've ever eaten?

The ones dug up by my father-in-law and my kids at his little country house with the big vegetable garden in Alexandria, Ontario, near the Québec border. What made them even tastier was watching my children's faces as the plant was pulled from the soil by their grandfather to reveal the cute little potatoes below. Collected in a bucket, rinsed off with the garden hose, cooked and served outside on the picnic table at the edge of the vegetable garden, sprinkled with fresh dill from my mother-in-law's garden, the air sweet with the mixed fragrances of tomatoes, cucumbers, beets and rutabagas, herbs and flowers, those lovingly nurtured spuds could not have tasted better in any universe!

Link to post
Share on other sites

The first time a potato raised my eyebrows was as a teenager, when my best friend and I were fledgling foodies, so rather than going to the hot dog place, or hamburger place at lunch that everyone frequented, we went to this little tiny restaurant that did a lot of rotisserie meats. It was mainly catering, but had a tiny restaurant area as well. It was the only place within walking distance of the high school where you wouldn't see any teenagers (except us!).

They had a twice baked potato that I had to get pretty much every time. I had never heard of such a thing before. It was incredibly soft and fluffy, with a perfect balance of cayenne and cheddar cheese baked on. I still remember those with fondness, but the place is gone, now.

I recently had steamed fingerlings in creme fraiche at AOC in L.A. They were amazing. They were so soft and the creme fraiche made them so rich. A bite taken with a piece of thick bacon stolen from another dish was like the Platonic ideal of a potato.

Although now that I read the descriptions of potatoes fresh from the ground, I am feeling like clandestinely planting one outside my apartment to test it out.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...