Potatoes Prep 101

Microwave: 

Pierce the potatoes several times with a fork as they can burst if the skins are left intact. If microwaving a single potato, place in the center of the oven and cook for five minutes. For two or more potatoes, place in a circle or spoke pattern and cook for 10 minutes. Turn or rotate the potatoes halfway through cooking time. Wrap or cover potatoes after removing them from the oven and let stand for five minutes.

Steamer: 

Cut larger potatoes into halves or quarters and leave the skins on. If desired, remove skins after cooking. Place potatoes into boiling water (not cold water) to retain more of the vitamin C. Adding garlic, onion, or herbs to the water will give the boiled potatoes a subtle flavor. Cover and cook until the potatoes can be easily pierced with the tip of a sharp knife. Drain the potatoes, return them to the pot, and toss gently over the still-warm burner to dry them. Cook small potatoes for 10 - 15 minutes, cut-up potatoes for 15 - 20 minutes and medium to large whole potatoes for 20 - 40 minutes.

BBQ: 

Cut potatoes into ¼ to ½ inch thick coins or slices. Drizzle with oil and season to taste. Place over Medium-High heat until char marks appear, about 6 - 8 minutes. Use grilling utensil to flip and cook remaining side.

Boil: 

Cut larger potatoes into halves or quarters and leave the skins on. If desired, remove skins after cooking. Place potatoes into boiling water (not cold water) to retain more of the vitamin C. Adding garlic, onion, or herbs to the water will give the boiled potatoes a subtle flavor. Cover and cook until the potatoes can be easily pierced with the tip of a sharp knife. Drain the potatoes, return them to the pot, and toss gently over the still-warm burner to dry them. Cook small potatoes for 10 - 15 minutes, cut-up potatoes for 15 - 20 minutes and medium to large whole potatoes for 20 - 40 minutes.

Oven: 

Russets are truly the best for baking. Do not wrap them in foil, however, as the covering traps moisture, which will steam rather than bake the potatoes. Pierce their skin in a few places with a fork before baking; this allows steam to escape, thus producing dry, fluffy potatoes. Thick-skinned potatoes may actually burst if baked without piercing.

Freezing: 

To freeze large potatoes, begin by washing, peeling, and removing eyes. Cut into ½ inch cubes and blanch for 5 minutes. Immerse in ice water immediately following for same duration of time. For smaller, thin skinned potatoes, scrub, blanch for 4 minutes and bathe in ice before placing produce in an airtight freezer bag.
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