Sunday, February 14, 2010

Potato Peeling 101...who knew?

Have you ever tried this? It's amazing! I've got to admit I haven't tested this...but I will!

Potatoes, next to mac and cheese and white truffles, are my very favorite food. Certainly, they're my favorite vegetable...!! Do you have a better way to peel a potato? let me know if you try this!
What's your favorite vegetable? And what's your favorite way to COOK a potato? Or favorite potato recipe? mmmm


Anonymous said...

Wow. What a great idea. I do boil potatoes in their skins for potato salad, and the skins peel right off, but of course I cook them 'til their cooked through.

It never occurred to me to try this. It's a great idea for alot of potatoes but I probably wouldn't bother for just a couple.

I would have to say potatoes are my favorite as well.

Z, thanks for the tip!


Z said...

I'm with you, Pris...I wouldn't bother for a few potatoes and yes, potato skins peel off fairly well for potato salad but still not perfectly. You're so welcome!

Elmers Brother said...

I love Mary Ann, better than Ginger. Although they are both lovely.

Potatos....yummmy...any kind of way.

Faith said...

OK, this is very interesting and worth keeping in mind -- yes, for BIG potato projects -- but I just discovered I have a head full of other questions about potato cooking:

I used to put potatoes into boiling water, then someone convinced me they should be started in cold water because that way the outside doesn't cook too much faster than the inside. It wouldn't be worth trying to boil the skins off starting cold unless I cooked them in the skins the whole time.

I also always boiled them uncovered, until a roommate actually got pretty annoyed about my doing them that way and insisted they be covered. What's the consensus here?

And another thing, is there an important difference either in timing or result between boiling them whole versus cut up?

One way or another it always works out but there MUST be a best way, right?

Z said...

I don't know, Faith, but I will agree with the roommate and covering the pot whenever you boil...there's no downside to that, it just speeds up the process.
I always peel and cut my potatoes for mashing.
But, I leave them with the peels on for potato salad, come to think of it! ?? You know, you do what Mom did..and that's what she does/did.
Also, I've always started them in cold water..I figure that's faster, too, as the potatoes are starting to cook as the water's heating up, right?

I'd be curious about any other input....maybe I'll give a shout-out at my blog to come help us on POTATOES! xxx

Anonymous said...

Amazing. I have to try it. But I like the skin of the potato.

My favorite potato recipe must be gratin dauphinois or tartiflette.


Faith said...

Thanks, Z, but with some foods covering the pot can make them sour -- cooking dried beans for instance, or soups. Also pasta isn't supposed to have a lid on it according to instructions I've seen. But perhaps it's right to cover potatoes. I'll wait for further input.

Anonymous said...

If you want your potatoes to cook faster, or are in a hurry, cut them up in smaller chunks. I peel them and cut them up for mashing too.

I don't cover mine. I don't time them either. Stick a knife or fork in them to tell their done.


Z said...

FB...tartiflette looks DEEELICIOUS. I never even saw that on a menu my whole 4 years in Paris but OH, does it look good. (you like the boiled skin of the potato that much? I have to admit I LOVE baked potato skins but not so much the thin boiled skin)
For those who'd like to try tartiflette, here's the recipe:

Faith, it's odd about the sour thing...sometimes I think my boiled potatoes for salad are a tad sour tasting, or just a bit metallic?...very interesting. And mashed, come to think of it....I've got to try uncovering, seems antithetical to me when it comes to getting things hot, but that makes sense.

Pris is right..of course, the smaller you cut the potato, the faster it boils.......I usually third russetts for mashed.

Jen said...

I love garlic mashed potatoes with the skins on, with sea salt and crushed black pepper.
gosh, I'm hungry!!

I can't think of any potato dish that I don't like

beamish said...

Did Mary Ann forget that the Professor made a battery for their radio out of a potato?

Am I a geek for remembering that episode?

Where in the heck did they get a potato on that island anyway?

Ducky's here said...

Baked potato for me. Favorite vegetable?

I love ... wait for it ... spinach.

Ducky's here said...

Peeling potatoes in an "art film", "Jeanne Dielman, 23 Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles" is a must. Too bad the board won't let me post a clip.

Brooke said...

That's wild! Seems to take a while, though.

Here's my fave, reposted:
This'll feed about four as a side dish. You can always just increase.

Take five russet/Idaho potatos. Get half of a yellow onion, or an entire small shallot, as you prefer.

Finely dice the onion. Peel and cube the potatoes. Even better, try to get someone else to peel the potatoes. My hubby is da' man when it comes to that!

Put them all in a big skillet w/ a lid. Add about a half a cup of vegetable oil. (My Grandma prefers Crisco melted beforehand, but I go with the oil.)

Take your pepper shaker and add pepper to taste. I like a lot, as the potatoes tend suck up the flavor of it. Mix it all up, put your lid on and fry over medium high heat, flipping the potatoes occasionally until your house smells like White Castle and the potatoes are a crispy brown. This should take about 15-20 minutes.

You don't want these like Potatoes O'Brian. They should actually be CRISP.

Salt to taste and enjoy.

This goes very well with a salisbury steak, or a baked boneless, skinless pork chop. Or just by itself if you make a bunch.

Anonymous said...

You're invited over for tartiflette then. I just need to find the reblochon. That's the tricky part.


Z said...

But, wait...I thought my tartiflette recipe I found didn't have the reblochon in it? I'll look again.......???
I will let you know about that date you emailed me about, and thank you, FrogBurger!

Oh, Brooke! YOu got here before I did with that super recipe..thanks!

Ducky, I must admit to loving spinach myself....with lemon on it.... how do you like yours? I love baked potatoes, too.. and TWICE baked potatoes..'s one SORT of similar;
peel and slice fairly thin, then sautee in a frying pan with Canola oil, with salt and pepper and THYME....start putting in the dry thyme once they're crisping up...slow and easy over the flame. It is DELICIOUS! My girlfriend and I used to live in the same apt bldg when we were in our twenties...we'd go up on the sundeck and play scrabble, drink martinis and then come down to her place, usually, and make those potatoes...we'd have felt much better the next day had we reversed the order and EATEN FIRST :-)

ANOTHER WAY a Romanian friend showed me is VERY PEASANT, as she says, and VERY GOOD for a light lunch or dinner ...and CHEAP!

sautee thinly sliced, peeled potatoes in oil, s &p, and once they're crispy, crack a few eggs right into that and toss around till the eggs are cooked....MAN OH MAN, is THAT delicious!!

Z said...

A correction: My recipe for the French potato dish DOES show Reblochon (deeeelicious) cheese in it...And I HAD my glasses on when I read it (yikes!)

Z said...

FrogBurger...check out the blog I accidentally found while researching Reblochon/Whole Foods!
It's all about Tartiflette and the really fun narrative really describes the pleasures of finding great food in the smallest and most obscure of French cafes!

Anonymous said...

Great post. I need to keep it in mind. Not really a recipe that fits the weather in LA but it's so good.


Faith said...

When FB posted about the tartiflette I went and read about it too. Sounds yummy. Anything with potato and cheese is yummy. But how come we don't get this magic ingredient called "double cream" over here? At least I've never seen it.

One way I got into cooking potatoes in the last few years that I particularly like is to bake them peeled and halved if small, quartered if large. Rub them with olive oil, salt and pepper and put them on a rack over a foil-lined baking sheet to catch the oil drips. Bake as for baked potato. You get crusty brown chunks of baked potato when you're finished. Kind of a cross between fries and baked potato maybe. Great with sour cream and butter, same as a baked potato. But that brown crust is yummy.

Another fave is hash browns -- grated, rinsed in a strainer, squeezed fairly dry, then fried slowly over low heat in olive oil mixed with butter until brown, then turned. I like them still a bit raw in the middle. If you add onion, egg and a bit of flour you get potato latkes, yummy too.

Anonymous said...

Cream Potatoes
Peel and slice the potatoes in about 1/4" inch slices. Layer potatoes in large casserole dish dotting with butter as you go.

Pour in a pint of heavy cream and fill to top of potatoes with half and half. Salt and pepper to taste. Potatoes should be up to within about an inch and 1/2 or 2" from top of dish. It tends to boil over.

Bake at 350 for about an hour and a half covered then remove cover for about 1/2 hour to brown.
Test for doneness with a knife.

This is really good as a leftover, btw.


Anonymous said...

One more thing. Cream Potatoes is a nice side dish to ham.

Z and Ducky, I like my spinach with vinegar on it.


Z said...

Hi, Pris...we called that Scalloped Potatoes and it IS good, thanks for the instructions...
Yes, it's good as a leftover because the cream sets better after it's cooled....mmm

spinach with what kind of vinegar? Sounds similar to the acidic lemon. I do like creamed spinach, too, but don't eat it much like that anymore!

Deborah on the Bayside said...

Here's a favorite of Mr. Bayside and I:

3 T. butter, melted
1-1/2 T. finely shredded mint leaves
1-1/2 T. minced shallot
large pinch of grated lemon zest
1 lb. small new potatoes

4 pieces parchment paper, 14 x 9

• Preheat oven to 350.
• Slice potatoes very thin.
• In a bowl, sitr together the butter, mint, shallot, zest and pepper. Add the potatoes and toss to coat.
• Place 1/4 of mix in middle of each piece of paper. Fold long ends together and twist short ends tight to seal.
• Bake 17 minutes. Serve in paper and slit or open on plate.

Serves 4
Source: Gourmet 7/93

Jen said...

favorite summertime veggie: sliced cucumbers soaked in vinegar with salt.

favorite winter veggie: aspargus basted in olive oil, seal salt, and garlic

Faith said...

I think I might try a combo of Pris's cream potatoes and FT's scalloped potatoes. All that cream -- has to be great.

Z said...

Jen, i love that, they serve it a lot in Japanese restaurants with very dark sesame seeds which MAKE it. mmm

I LOVE asparagus baked on a cookie sheet after having been tossed in olive oil, salt and a little garlic

JINGOIST said...

Morgan's French Fries (tasty method first)

1. Using large potatoes, cut the potatos into four inch long, thick fries

2. Fry in peanut or vegetable oil

3. Combine 1 cup mayo, 1 tbsp. curry, tsp. hot sauce, 1/2 tsp. garlic, add a little water to losen texture of sauce and stir.

You get great fries with an irresistible spicy curry sauce!

*The more healthy recipe uses light mayo and baking the fries instead of frying them.

*The most healthy recipe requires you to drink the water in the recipe and then go for a run. :-)

February 17, 2010 12:25 PM

Z said...

Jingo, sounds like I'd never be able to stop eating those fries with that sauce!
(screw the water and the run :=)
actually, that reminds me to go for my walk..darn!

Anonymous said...

Z, Mr. Pris's mother called it cream potatoes. My mom always made her scalloped potatoes with cheese.

I just continue to call them that to differentiate between them. My family loves it.
So rich and yummy. Yes it's true the cream thickens and sets better after it's cooled.

I use malt vinegar on my spinach. Mr. Pris prefers butter. I serve it plain and let people doctor it the way they like it.


Z said...

pris, they both sound great! And yes, you can put cheese in scalloped potatoes.. Doesn't matter much what we call them, does it!
I always have to smile when people say "This is good..what do you CALL IT?" I always want to say FRED :0-)