Types: new? potatoes

Subject: new? potatoes
Newsgroups: rec.food.cooking
From: Jim Kajpust (jkajpust at concentric.net)
Date: 01 Jan 2000 21:42:08 EST
I have a couple of recipes that call for "new" potatoes. Is that a brand, style, or type of potato? The only thing I found in the store was new potatoes in a can -- are there uncooked ones?

Also, what does it mean when then talk about the "mealiness" of potatoes?

From: M. Smith (smith_ml at swbell-dot-net)
Date: Sat, 1 Jan 2000 21:50:28 -0600
Maybe this just depends on the area of the country you are in.

In the midwest US, "new potatoes" are red potatoes 1" to 2" in diameter. They are often cooked whole in boiling water for 15+ minutes and served plain, 2 to 4 whole ones per person. Works fine, especially if there is a sauce with some other part of the meal.

Sometimes after the initial cooking, they are quartered and tossed in butter and parsley, skin on. Very tasty.

I'm in my late 40's and can remember my grandfather growing them in his large garden behind his house. They were often added to slow-cooked green beans with bacon.

You can substitute large diced full sized red potatoes, but the effect is not quite the same.
From: Bob Slover (BobSlo at flink.com)
Date: Sun, 02 Jan 2000 01:53:23 -0500
This just reminded me of a favorite of mine when I was young! (2 or 3 years ago :). Creamed peas and new potatoes, peas and potatoes just harvested from the garden, YUmmmm!

Can't wait til summer.
From: KatMarie (dannkatt at NOSPAMhotmail.com)
Date: Mon, 3 Jan 2000 10:21:10 +0100
yummmy.,.. now I know what I want for dinner.. cant wait for fall.. :)
From: Metra (metra at home.com)
Date: Wed, 05 Jan 2000 00:15:30 GMT
My sister made an hor'd ouvre for Xmas eve with baby reds - about 1" in diameter.

She boiled them, hollowed them out and filled them with a mixture of the mashed insides, horseradish, creme fraiche and topped them with a few red caviar eggs. They were pretty and very tasty.
From: Alan Boles (hahabogus at hotmail.com)
Date: Sun, 02 Jan 2000 14:48:26 GMT
To me new potatoes are the first of the crop of a new harvest. Small red potatoes boild with the skins on and some mint leaves in the water. The mealiness is a reference to the texture of the potato. There is a difference in texture between red and white taters. Mealiness refers to the meal (like in corn meal) texture of the flesh. Sorry I can't explain it better.
From: penmart10 at aol.com (Sheldon)
Date: 02 Jan 2000 15:51:37 GMT
Alan Boles writes:
>To me new potatoes are the first of the crop of a new harvest.
>Sorry I can't explain it better.

There's really not much else about what constitutes a "new potato" to explain, the word "new" pretty much sums it up.

"New potatoes are simply young potatoes (any variety)."

"They haven't had time to convert their sugar fully into starch and consequently have a crisp, waxy texture and thin, undeveloped wispy skins. New potatoes are small enough to cook whole and are excellent boiled or pan-roasted. Because they retain their shape after being cooked and cut, new potatoes are particularly suited for use in potato salad. The season for new potatoes is spring to early summer."

© Copyright Barron's Educational Services, Inc. 1995 based on THE FOOD LOVER'S COMPANION, 2nd edition, by Sharon Tyler Herbst.
From: Harry A. Demidavicius (harryd at telusplanet.net)
Date: Mon, 03 Jan 2000 00:10:53 GMT
Alan Boles wrote:
>To me new potatoes are the first of the crop of a new harvest.

Your New potato definition is correct, but out of date, Alan. You can get those puppies the year round now. But we agree that they are no good as mashed, in potato salad, or in latkes where you want the starchier ones.
From: Schaller_Barb at htc.honeywell.com (Melba's Jammin')
Date: Sat, 01 Jan 2000 23:10:50 -0600
New potatoes to me are red potatoes, preferably smallish, bought at the farmers market in mid-to-late summer, most readily identified by a thin skin. I don't peel them, merely scrub them. A firm scrubbing while raw will take that thin peel off. It's that thin. I don't always remove the skin. Boiled and tossed in chopped parsley and melted butter, they're just this side of heaven. YMMV. Mealiness describes the quality of the cooked potato. Um, mealy.... Jeez, I have to let someone else describe
From: Alan Zelt (alzelt at worldnet.att.net)
Date: Sat, 01 Jan 2000 22:12:01 -0800
This seems like the ideal thread for the SBF to give some input. I haven't met anyone like a Scandinavian for knowing about spuds.
From: Jill McQuown
Date: Sun, 2 Jan 2000 04:33:53 -0600
Jim K wrote in message ...
>I have a couple of recipes that call for "new" potatoes.

They are small red potatoes... they look like mini red potatoes, actually. They are simply wonderful when boiled and tossed with butter and parsley, seasoned just with salt & pepper.

"Mealiness" seems to refer to the starchiness of the cooked potato. Hard to describe and I'm not a chef so I can't give you an exact definition. But you know how a *baking* potato flakes so easily after it's baked? Other potatoes, when baked in the same manner, don't quite have the same quality (but they still taste good!). Mom always used really starchy Idaho spuds when making stew. I think it helped thicken the mix.
From: amira at teleport.com (Ranee)
Date: Sun, 02 Jan 2000 13:33:00 -0800
Jill McQuown wrote:
>They are small red potatoes...

I believe that even white potatoes can be "new," just that we more commonly see the red ones. They are just early little potatoes, dug up before the rest mature. Yummy!
From: katrob at ihug.co.nz (Kathy Bloor)
Date: Wed, 05 Jan 2000 05:06:23 GMT
In New Zealand, new potatoes are ones that are fresh dug out of the garden, but it also refers to the very small potatoes (vrey small!) freshly dug. Usually, they are scrubbed rather than peeled, boiled whole with a few sprigs of fresh mint and served with a dollop of butter on top. Traditionally served at Christmas.