Happy Fall everyone!
I have something very exciting to share with my readers. I grew potatoes for the first time this year and am happy to announce I just made my first harvest of beautiful red potatoes! If you have grown potatoes before you know that there is nothing more captivating then scraping the soil back only to find big beautiful taters that almost look like they came out of nowhere! I will now forever be a potato farmer.
You can guarantee I’m already making plans on growing many different varieties of potatoes next year which means more planting beds for growing these nutricious tubers. Also on the list is to make sure I label what I plant! Unfortunately, I spaced on labeling what kind of red potatoes these are so next time I’m going to make my label first…then plant. For now, we’ll just call this a Belly Button Potato
Since my harvest was very small I won’t be storing them for winter eating, not to mention I’m not sure if this is a type of potato that would store well. These babies are going to get eaten right away by myself, friends and family over the next week. The first meal I made was a small mountain of simply prepared mashed potatoes. The secret to perfect mashed potatoes are two things: 1) Add a bay leaf to the cooking water. 2) Do not boil but simmer the potatoes. I learned this from a tweet made by Ron Zimmerman of the famous Herbfarm in Woodinville, WA and it really does make a huge difference in the flavor and texture of the mashed potatoes. Second up on the potato harvest menu was cooking up a big pot of steaming potato-leek soup. This recipe is not only simple but it can be made in short period of time. Hopefully you’ll give this a recipe a try for your next lunch or prepare it for light lazy night supper.
Potato Leek Soup-
3 medium leeks cleaned well and chopped (tender parts only)
1/2 cup diced onion or shallots
2 Tbsp. butter and 2 Tbsp. olive oil
6 Tbsp. flour
5 C. chopped organic raw potatoes, I leave the skins on
8 C. veggie or chicken broth, homemade is best but not necessary
S & P
1 C. half n half (optional…I usually leave it out most of the time)
Saute leeks and onions in butter and olive oil until soft. Sprinkle with flour and mix. Add potatoes, broth, salt and pepper, simmer until potatoes are tender. Add cream if desired. Top with fresh herbs and red pepper flakes, optional.