The Chinese dishes are potatoes
3 ways to prepare potatoes: boiling, frying and baking
What type of potato are you?
Oh, potatoes. Most of us grew up with them, regardless of whether we come from Germany, China or the United States. It's hard to imagine a world without it. In my opinion, the humble potato is one of the few foods that really deserves a reputation as "survival food". The potato can really save your day if you ever wonder what to cook. Versatile, inexpensive and undemanding: potatoes are a must in every pantry.
As a staple food in many kitchens around the world, potatoes are often only seen as a side dish. We want to give it the attention it deserves (Julia Child had the right idea when she did the potato show in the 1960s).
There are thousands of potato recipes from all over the world. To keep things simple, let's focus on the three main cooking methods: pot-boiled, pan-fried, or oven-baked. We won't cover all preparation options, but we will give you new ideas if the thought comes back to you "potatoes are boring". And for all of the potato lovers out there, read on to find out what your favorite preparation method says about you. For all skeptics, we promise that our recipes are reliable and workable.
Before we jump straight to our potato recipes, let's brush up on our knowledge of the potato. Everyone has bought potatoes at least once, right? Maybe you think you already know everything about potatoes. But when it comes to potato varieties it can get a little confusing. If you buy the wrong type of potato and are disappointed with the results you cooked, don't blame the potato - read on instead.
The choice of potatoes should be based on what is going to be cooked. Potatoes are usually divided into three types according to starch: high starch, medium starch and low starch.
Potatoes with a lot of starch are floury and are perfect for mashed potatoes, whole baked potatoes and french fries. Russet (American potatoes) are typical potatoes with a high percentage of starch.
Low starch potatoes are also called waxy potatoes because they keep best after cooking. This makes them ideal for salads and roasts.
Medium strength potatoes, also called all-purpose potatoes, have less starch than russets, but still retain their shape after cooking. The best-known type of potato in this category, Yukon Gold, is the safest buy if you have not yet decided what to cook.
If you're lucky enough to get seasonal new potato varieties, don't hesitate. Take a look at our article on new potatoes to learn more about how to make them. For many dishes, especially baked potatoes or potato soups, sweet potatoes can also be used as a change.
You should buy firm potatoes with smooth, wrinkle-free skin. The best potatoes shouldn't have dents, cuts, or discoloration.
Store potatoes in a dark, cool, well-ventilated place at room temperature. So they can last anywhere from a week to a month or even longer. As soon as sprouts can already be seen on the potatoes, they must be cooked as soon as possible. Before cooking, cut out all the sprouts generously. As soon as the potatoes have turned green, it is better not to eat them anymore. If you plan to prepare the potatoes later, leave the peeled potatoes in a bowl of cold water to prevent them from turning brown.
Now let's find out what type of potato you are.
What it says about your personality: If you consider yourself the potato cook type, then you are more of the classic type and like to be on the safe side.
One of the easiest ways to prepare potatoes is to cook them. I know some may now roll their eyes. Although cooking potatoes doesn't require any special skills, it's important to cook them properly. Why? You don't want to regret later that you ignored this first step when adding the potatoes to your potato salad. It's an important step that you will come across many times in your cooking life.
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Boil potatoes properly
The most common question is whether to cook potatoes with or without the peel. It mainly depends on the recipe and how you personally like it in the finished dish. Peeled and pre-cut potatoes cook faster than peeled potatoes, which is an excellent time-saving trick. On the other hand, unpeeled potatoes become more watery in consistency.
In general, all types of potatoes can be cooked. If you want to use them as a side dish to meat or in a potato salad, use waxy potatoes or all-purpose potatoes, as these hold their shape best after cooking. Check every now and then whether the potatoes are done, as the cooking time can vary depending on the size and type.
Check this by pricking the potatoes with a fork every now and then. As a sign that the potatoes are done, the fork should slip out of the potatoes easily. In salads, the potatoes should be a little firmer.
I'm trying to avoid the phrase "the real deal" as there are so many variations around the world, but we ran a The Best Potato Salad Ever Contest with 5 different recipes and we are happy to welcome the representatives of to share two continents here:
Mashed potatoes are one of the most popular potato preparations. You can stick to the basic recipe or refine it with herbs such as parsley and flavor carriers such as truffles. To go a step further, try the Shepherd's Pie.
What it says about your personality: If you are of the potato fry type, then you are spontaneous in life and cooking and like to get things done quickly.
It's quick in the frying pan. Light, deep-fried, crispy potatoes are one of the best dishes when hosting a midweek dinner. Of course, there has been some debate about whether pan-fried or whether it's better to cook in the oven. In our guide for crispy potatoes, we have summarized the various methods for making the best fried potatoes.
Potato pancakes are a popular breakfast around the world, whether they are called latkes, hashbrowns, hash browns, or gamjajeon. Ingredients can vary, but the love we share for their crispness is the same.
Those who long for extra crispness and are looking for a potato dish with an Asian touch should try these Chinese potato strips. It is one of the first Chinese dishes I ever learned to cook.
What it says about your personality: If you're the stove type, then you believe in "Sharing is Caring" and like to invest time in cooking.
I admit that it sounds a bit simplistic here, as the result in the oven couldn't be more different: crispy fries, creamy gratin or hearty baked potatoes. Regardless of the variant, potatoes are often prepared in larger portions, so sharing is popular.
Baking potatoes in the oven is one of the easiest ways to prepare them: just cut them, add the spices and oil, then put them in the oven - and you have an irresistible, crispy serving of potatoes.
Our cook Johanna gives us a little tip: An even crispier shell can be achieved by lowering the temperature and extending the baking time specified in the recipe. Small waxy potatoes can be put whole in the oven, while larger, starchy potatoes are better cooked beforehand. Are you already familiar with the classic rosemary potatoes? Then try this Spanish variant:
Delicious, warm potato gratins and casseroles are ideal for family celebrations. Either you start with a simple, quick combination or you go straight to a meat variant. Freestyle is definitely recommended here! The addition of herbs, grated cheese, and seasonal vegetables make the dish even more exciting. In case you haven't seen it before, gratins are one of the most popular dishes on Kitchen Stories.
If you want to create something more unusual and amaze your guests with little effort, then Hasselback potatoes or fan potatoes should not be missing at your next party.
Cooking potatoes in the oven doesn't mean you can't use smaller portions. Yes, I'm talking about the stuffed baked potato, also known as kumpir. Try different fillings like guacamole, fried chicken, or couscous. I often find myself at Berlin greengrocers after work, where I quickly buy potatoes and toppings whenever I want.
Ok, last but not least: french fries. We know everyone, big and small, is crazy about it. Of course, we also have a guide to homemade french fries in our luggage. We also find the classic pan or oven question here - although it has more to do with personal preference than existential success.
How to optimize your potato recipes
If you want to make even more of the potato, dare to try recipes such as classic Schnupfnudeln or homemade gnocchi. You will love the result when the magic potato meets flour.
Which type of potato are you: boiling, frying or out of the oven? Do you have any tips & tricks? Then tell us in the comments!
Published on March 15, 2019
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