Boiled: Potato sort for boiled potatoes?

Subject: Potato sort for boiled potatoes?
From: Michaela Scheving (mschevin at
Date: Fri, 15 Mar 1996 14:39:55 -0600
4 months ago I moved from Sweden to Texas. In Sweden we use peeled boiled potatoes a lot (right: not french fries, not mashed potatoes, not potato patties, not scalloped..) Just peel the potatoes and put them in salted water and boil for 10-20 min according to the season.

Anyway, the potatoes types I have so far found her in Texas doesn't really seem to fit for plain boiling. They either get too hard or get all mushy and fall apart.

Over in Sweden we have types like Bintje, King Edward, different variants of Mandel and many other types. I guess that there must be lots of different types here in the US as well, not only "Idaho Potatoes".

So I wonder if there is anyone out there who knows the name of a potato sort/type that is suitable for boiling, so I can ask for that type at my grocer's?
From: nancy-dooley at (Nancy Dooley)
Date: Fri, 15 Mar 1996 15:46:19
I guess I would look for the small, red-skinned ones (whatever they're called) - at the right time of year, they're "new potatoes," and perfect for peeling (or half-peeling) and boiling whole.
From: hvane at (L. Merinoff)
Date: 15 Mar 1996 21:03:04 -0700
Michaela Scheving wrote:
> Over in Sweden we have types like Bintje, King Edward ...

I was actually eating some Bintjes tonight as I read this message (ah yes, another elegant dinner: me at my computer, my husband at his....) I mail-order them from New Penny Farm in Maine. They have a 'Potato of the Month' club, or you can just place a single order. Their phone number is 800 827-7551.

They specialize in heirloom varieties and can tell you exactly which potato they have that will work in the kind of dish you want to make. I like the traditional Maine Katahdins for potato salads, the Shepody for French fries and the Bintjes for almost anything else. According to the tag on my bag:
BINTJE -- From Holland, the most widely grown yellow potato in the world, the Bintje has a distinctive flavor. Medium-high starch.

The New Penny people (doesn't that sound like a children's TV show or a relentlessly cheerful choir?) are very nice, and it's great to talk with a farmer who really knows and cares about what he does. Then again, these days I'm sure most small farmers feel that way or they wouldn't be doing what they do.
From: donwiss at (Don Wiss)
Date: Sat, 16 Mar 1996 13:26:39 GMT
My favorite potato is the Yukon Gold. In recent years they have become more readily available in supermarkets in the US. They boil fine, though I tend to chop them up and microwave them. They have a richer, more of a potato taste, and are less dry than regular ones.

Also I find peeling them to be a lot of unnecessary work, and the peels have a lot of nutrition in them. Just clean them well with a brush first.
From: paulo at (Costello & Orselli)
Date: Sun, 17 Mar 1996 10:05:12 -0400
Most large grocery stores in the US only stock a few varieties of potatoes. If you're shopping at HEB or Tom Thumb you may have a choice of only Idaho baking spuds or red potatoes. Go for the red ones - the smaller the better. If there is a Whole Foods grocery store near you check it out - along with all kinds of healthy foo-foo stuff you will find a more well-rounded and interesting produce section.

I spent five years in Austin. I miss it madly.

From: Helle G. Paulsen (helle.paulsen at
Date: 17 Mar 1996 22:29:56 GMT
Nancy Dooley writes:
> perfect for peeling (or half-peeling) and boiling whole.

Or boil them with the skin on - it preserves the vitamin C better. And drop the potatoes into the water when it's already boiling - vitamin C is "destroyed" at... 60 C (?), below the boiling temperature of water. Of course there isn't all that much vitamins in potatoes, so if you seldom have them, this won't matter.
From: madelin at (Madelin Holtkamp)
Date: 18 Mar 1996 17:38:28 GMT
We have red or "new" potatoes that are nice for boiling. White Rose potatoes also make a passable boiled potato. Other types that may be available in your area are Yellow Finn and Yukon Gold.

If you boil the potatoes in their skins, they may hold together better. I always put mine back into the pan after draining and set the pan over low heat. I sort of shake the pan til the potatoes have steamed off a good bit of their moisture. Being too lazy to peel potatoes, I have never tried this method with peeled ones.
From: ambush at (Richard Sherratt)
Date: Tue, 19 Mar 1996 10:45:25 GMT
Look for the ones with red skins. They are waxier than other types of potatoes and have a slightly yellow flesh.

The varieties we get here are Pontiacs and Desiree. Might have different names in Texas.
From: jenkinsgm.dfem at (gail)
Date: 20 Mar 1996 16:05:55 GMT
Don't buy "all-purpose" potatoes. My husband bought them once when I had to take potato salad to a family cookout. I said I made mashed potato salad for something different because the potatoes fell apart when I boiled them and really crumbled when I mixed the dressing in. Usually russet turn out okay when boiled.