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Real Food: Potatoes

Did you know that August 19 is National Potato Day? In case you hadn’t already planned to make potatoes part of your weekend menu, you now have the perfect excuse.

Why potatoes? They’re high in fiber, potassium and Vitamin C and provide more energy and protein than wheat, rice, and corn. And besides being good for you, they’re good for the environment too: They don’t require massive amounts of water, fertilizer or chemicals to thrive; plus they yield more nutritious food, more quickly and on less land than any other crop.

If your kids are only eating potatoes in French fry form, they are missing out on a whole range of possibilities. Our favorite potatoes for kids are the little creamer potatoes (the smallest size that grows naturally) from The Little Potato Company. Each of these miniature gems has super-fresh flavors ranging from nutty to buttery to even sweet. Frieda’s Specialty Produce, which is featuring these potatoes during the month of August, sent us some potatoes to sample and we couldn’t wait to dig in.

Because they’re so small, these potatoes are super-quick to roast, boil, or grill. We love them tossed with a little olive oil and roasted in a pan. But for a special occasion like National Potato Day, we decided to pull out one of our favorite special flavors…lavender. Yes, lavender.

We had a chance to visit a lavender farm this summer and we can’t get enough of this fragrant herb. Although lavender is most often used in sweet dishes, it makes a nice companion to savory dishes too – and when added to potatoes, lavender brings out a nice nutty, earthy flavor.

This Lavender/Lemon Potato Salad was a hit with our kids – and we hope you will like it too:

Lavender/Lemon Potato Salad

1 1/2 pounds small creamer potatoes (we used the Terrific Trio from The Little Potato Company)

Juice of one small lemon

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1 small bunch lavender leaves, cleaned and finely chopped

1/4 teaspoon salt

Fill a large pot with water; bring to a boil. Boil the potatoes for approximately 30 minutes or until soft; drain and cool the potatoes. Cut the potatoes (skin on) into 1/2-inch thick slices and place in large bowl. Meanwhile, whisk together the lemon juice, olive oil, and mustard. Pour the dressing and the lavender leaves over the potatoes, toss gently. Let the potato salad “rest” to soak in the flavors for at least 30 minutes before serving. Serve at room temperature. Serves 4.

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Want to try these Little Potatoes? If you live in Southern California, they will be at Ralph’s Fresh Fare stores throughout the month of August. Even better, if you want a $1-off coupon to try them, just email Frieda’s at mail [at] friedas [dot] com. Happy National Potato Day!

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6 Responses to Real Food: Potatoes

  1. Rosemary Abbate August 20, 2012 at 9:18 am #

    Jeanne: these look fabulous…

    • Jeanne August 20, 2012 at 9:44 pm #

      Thanks! This was one of my favorite foods of the whole summer!

  2. Valentina August 21, 2012 at 9:50 pm #

    Beautiful images! The lavender looks so pretty with all of the potato skins!

    • Jeanne August 21, 2012 at 10:16 pm #

      Thanks, Valentina! That means a lot coming from you because you’re the flower/food expert in my book! : )

  3. Alice October 9, 2012 at 1:10 pm #

    Like you, I’ve fallen in love with colorful potatoes, especially purple sweet potatoes. And I can’t believe how easy they have been to grow in the garden (which is wonderful since they are awfully expensive at our health food grocery): http://www.northcarolinahealth.com/sweet-potato-gardening.php

    • Jeanne October 9, 2012 at 1:16 pm #

      Yes, I can’t get enough of those purple potatoes – such a great fall color for the table! Thanks for stopping by, Alice!

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