Not Lovely, But Spuds are Nutritious | Print |  E-mail
Thursday, 21 February 2013 14:09

022113fRaw potatoes are a little like the ugly duckling that only a mother could love.

They lack the grace and elegance of, say, an eggplant with its distinctive purple skin, and they come to the market covered with dirt.

Given all that, it’s hard to figure why potatoes are the country’s No. 1 vegetable in terms of consumption. Each of us eats an average of 135 pounds of potatoes a year. Could it be that they are not only tasty, but healthy as well?

One average-size potato, baked in its skin, has only 130 calories. It has no cholesterol or fat, and is high in fiber, potassium and complex carbohydrates.

And, they’re versatile. You can bake them, boil them, mash them, fry them or use them in pies, cakes, cookies, candy, soup, salad or bread.

ROSEMARY-ROASTED RED POTATOES

1-1/2 pounds red-skinned potatoes

3 tablespoons olive oil

1-1/2 teaspoons dried rosemary

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400°F. Coat a baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.

Wash potatoes and cut into 1/2-inch pieces. Dry each piece well. Place in a large bowl and toss with olive oil and rosemary.

Arrange in a single layer in the prepared dish. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Bake for 25 minutes, or until tender and slightly crispy. Serves 4 to 6.

OLD-FASHIONED SCALLOPED POTATOES

6 russet potatoes

3 tablespoons butter

3 tablespoon all-purpose unbleached flour

1 teaspoon salt

2 cups scalded milk

1/2 cup minced onion

1 cup grated sharp Cheddar cheese

Paprika

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Peel and thinly slice potatoes and place in a large bowl. Cover with cold water.

Melt the butter in a saucepan; stir in the flour and salt. Cook, stirring for almost a minute, then gradually stir in the milk. Cook until thickened. Remove from heat.

Drain the potatoes and dry well. Transfer to a bowl; add the minced onion and cream sauce. Stir gently until well coated with the sauce.

Transfer to a buttered 1-1/2-quart casserole.

Top with cheese and an ample sprinkling of paprika.

Bake for 1 hour, or until the potatoes are tender and browned. Serves 4 or 5.

POTATO-LEEK SOUP

4large leeks, white part only, well washed, trimmed and thinly sliced

3 tablespoons butter

1-1/2 pounds potatoes, peeled and sliced

1 (10-1/2 ounce) can vegetable or chicken broth

2 cups water

2 cups whole milk

Salt and white pepper

Snipped chives

Sauté the leeks in butter in a soup pot over medium-low heat until very tender, but don’t let them brown.

Add the potatoes, broth and water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and cook until potatoes are mushy and all ingredients are soft and blended.

Add the milk and cook until heated through, but do not boil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve garnished with chives. Serves 4 to 5.

Bake for 25 minutes, or until tender and slightly crispy. Serves 4 to 6.

POTATO SOUFFLE

5 large russet potatoes

1 cup milk

1 quart half-and-half

10 eggs

1 tablespoon salt

1 tablespoon white pepper

1/2 cup grated Parmesan

Peel and thinly slice potatoes. Rinse 3 times to remove starch. Mix half-and-half, eggs, salt, white pepper and grated cheese well with electric mixer.

In 13x9-inch pan, alternate layering potatoes with cream mixture, until about 3/4 inch from top of pan. Press potatoes and cover with foil. Bake at 350°F for 1-1/2 to 2 hours until top is browned and potatoes are tender. Let cool and let stand for an hour before cutting into squares. Sprinkle with paprika. Makes 8 to 10 servings.

POTATOES ROMANOFF

3 large russet potatoes, boiled, peeled, cubed

2 cups large-curd cottage cheese

1 cup sour cream

1 garlic clove, minced

1/4 cup sliced green onions

Salt to taste

1 cup grated sharp Cheddar cheese

Paprika

Mix first six ingredients, turn into greased 8x12-inch Pyrex dish, top with cheese and paprika and bake at 350°F for one hour. Serves 4.

JARLSBERG SKILLET POTATOES

1-1⁄2 pounds new potatoes

1-1⁄2 teaspoons fresh rosemary leaves

1⁄3 cup olive oil

1-2 tablespoons dry mustard, to taste

Freshly ground black pepper

1 pound grated Jarlsberg

Preheat oven to 425°F. Slice potatoes wafer thin and drop them into cold water to avoid discoloration. Rub rosemary between fingers to break leaves and reserve. Heat oil in a 12-inch iron skillet.

Drain and dry the potatoes thoroughly and add to skillet, cooking over medium-high heat. Occasionally shake pan gently to toss but not break potatoes. When potatoes are slightly limp, add rosemary and sprinkle with mustard and pepper. Shake well to mix and press down with a spatula. Cook until brown and crisp on bottom, lifting carefully to check.

Sprinkle grated cheese on top. While still hot from stove top, immediately place skillet in oven and bake 2-3 minutes, until cheese starts to bubble and brown. Slice and serve. Serves 4.

FRENCH FRIES

1 Russet potato, cut into evenly-sized strips

1 quart vegetable oil

Salt to taste

Soak potatoes in a large bowl of water for about 30 minutes. Pat dry thoroughly with paper towels.

Heat oil in a deep-fryer or large saucepan to 275°F. Gently add the potatoes in the hot oil for about 5 minutes, stirring and flipping the potatoes occasionally. Remove potatoes from oil with a slotted spoon to drain on paper towel and to cool completely.

Heat oil in a deep-fryer or large saucepan to 350°F. Fry the potatoes again until golden brown, 5 to 6 minutes. Blot with a paper towel. Sprinkle with salt to serve.

 

 


 

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