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Monday, April 30, 2012

Choose Potato Cooking Tips And Ideas

Mashed potato and sweet potatoMashed potato and sweet potato (Photo credit: fritish)
By Agaton Rasmon

The potato was first discovered in the Andes more than 8000 years ago. It was many centuries before it arrived in Europe in the 16th Century. Over the years potato cooking has become extremely common and is now cooked throughout the world.

Today there are numerous kinds to choose and you will find that different ones will suit particular cooking methods and recipes. The new potato and round red ones are ideal for boiling. They will hold their shape well. If you wish to serve them mashed then baking or russets will work well. Choose long whites for baked or fried potatoes.

If you want to have them mashed, cook them in milk rather than water. Adding garlic to the cooking process will make the taste more interesting. For a lighter mixture, use skimmed milk instead of full fat milk and leave out any butter you had thought of mixing in afterwards. Do not be tempted to mash them too much as they can become too starchy. Herbs, salt and pepper, roasted garlic or grated cheese can be included as you do your final mix.

Chop them in smaller pieces such as quarters or halves to prepare them for roasting. Toss in olive oil. Keep checking and turning them in the oven to make sure you have an even browning.

If you are intending to fry them cut them and soak for half an hour. Make sure they are dried thoroughly before adding to your pan. Cook and drain them and remove excess fat with a kitchen towel. Frying for a second time will make them crispier.

A simple method is to bake them in their skins, although a longer cooking time is needed. There are lots of different fillings like tuna and sweetcorn, grated cheese or coleslaw. They are colorful and provide a satisfying meal.

If you want to make a Lyonnaise dish you will need to slice cooked potatoes, add sliced onions, butter and herbs of your choice. It makes a tasty meal. You will find it filling, too. Another tasty meal using red ones is potato au gratin. It has grated cheese as a topping. Alternatively, you can make a casserole supper meal. Cooked potatoes have to be diced. Add cottage cheese and combine with sour cream, cheese and garlic. The ingredients will be easy to buy.

New ones can be eaten hot or cold so do not worry about cooking too many. Adding cold ones to a salad makes an ideal dish. If you want to add a dressing then mix mustard, olive oil and a little lemon juice. These simple potato cooking tips and ideas will make preparing them a pleasure!

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