Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Smashed Majestic Purple Potatoes

Since we were out of town for a long weekend and not hosting the Seder this year we had to scramble when we got back. Since I was not going to go through the elaborate preparation I would normally go for the Seder, I still wanted  a festive, yet delicious meal midweek on Passover. One staple item I got before leaving was purple potatoes. Not only will it sate cravings of starches for lack of bread but will also elevate a quick mid week meal and a holiday meal.
In the past I would boil these with skin on as I do regular potatoes with garlic and salt. Peel and smash them with the softened garlic cloves, add olive oil, salt, fresh black pepper and fresh rosemary leaves and serve. Only thing the color dulls. When I googled to find a new recipe I came across a brilliant one by Gramercy Tavern’s Michael Anthony. It has lemon in it. It revitalizes the color to a gorgeous deep purple. It also uses white pepper for a more subtle dimension.

I knew the purple potato originated in Peru but upon further research I found it fascinating that all potatoes were originated in the Andes. I also was surprised to learn that potatoes were introduced to most of the world by the Spanish conquerors of the Inca Empire in the second half of the 16th century. That late of a date is absolutely mind boggling. Upon further reading here I was also surprised to learn that European settlers introduced these tubers to North America with one exception of wild variety who made it in from South America to Texas.

The purple variety, might be referred to as blue variety, and the Purple Majesty in particular, cross bred in the US, are richer in antioxidant anthocyanin. Richly concentrated as pigments, anthocyanin present in berries, such as blueberries, and purple potatoes are known for their health benefits in cancer, aging and neurological diseases, inflammation, diabetes and bacterial infections. Please read here for further breakdown of health benefits found in cancer research.

Hard boiled eggs, deviled or egg salad and horseradish on matza complements this purple potato dish on the side. Somehow all these flavors with the potato mesh well together.

The recipe I found here.

27 comments :

  1. Shulie, you found a way to bring back the brightness of the purple potatoes? Yay! I'll have to try this recipe sometime. I love purple potatoes but I do get disappointed when their beautiful hue turns a pasty color after cooking. Thanks for the education and the cooking tip. Will try the new recipe but I'll try your way, too. I usually roast them but your method sounds equally wonderful. :-)

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  2. Love the purple potatoes. I get fingerling potatoes that are mixed colors and have tried that business with the lemon with success too but now I want to find just the purple. My favorite color. Ever.

    These are almost too pretty to eat Shulie.

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  3. Purple potatoes are just stunning... and what a great way to feature them!

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  4. Just lovely. I haven't had purple potatoes in long time. I loved your informative post. :)

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  5. Your purple potatoes are gorgeous! I made purple potato - lobster peirogis last summer, but the purple potato seemed to fade when boiled in the dough with the lobster and herbs.

    In any event, I WILL make your potatoes.. with brisket, no more matzo ball soup alone..every.single.night this week lol

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  6. these look beautiful, wish I could find them here! and thanks for the info, learned something new today!

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  7. Purple potatoes are so lovely and your photos make them all the more intriguing. What a great post!

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  8. looks exotic and different !! i didn't know purple potatoes exist ...now im so excited :D lovely post

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  9. I have cooked with purple potatoes only once when I bought a bag of various fingerling potatoes, but I have always been mesmerized by their beautiful color. Your photos are exquisite, as always:) I hope the week of Passover is a happy one for you and your family:)

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  10. Such a lovely colour and beautiful pictures.

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  11. Awee...so this was the starchy subject of your research, S! Glad that you could save the dish for the pictures :) Hope some day I could lay my hands on these exotica and make this lemony and lovely recipe.

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  12. I've roasted the purple fingerling potatoes before but never mashed them. I'll have to do that next. They almost look like flowers! Thanks for sharing your recipe.

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  13. Purple potatoes are simply gorgeous.& I love the way u have done it, simple, earthy and with a burst of flavors.

    I had found these gems 2 years back and never did after. One of them were forgotten & it rooted and I had planted them. next season I got tiny tiny (cherry size) about 15 potatoes!!

    guess what I had made with them? (Besides a salad) - Latkes!!

    To keep as much color as possible while cooking, don't boil them straight in water. Steam them and with skin on as you did (I use a bowl inside my cooker), so they do not directly touch the water. i have seen the difference.

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  14. Stunning color and thanks for the tip. Now, I wonder if I could revitalize myself by using the same lemon tip during the upcoming hot summer months.

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  15. i've cooked purple potatoes before but they always lost their gorgeous color - YAYYYY FOR LEMONS!! that is a great tip Shulie!

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  16. Such an informative post. I have not used purple potatoes as yet but after reading all this I should be looking out for them

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  17. I love purple potatoes. I remember the first time I made them for my stepsons - this was something new to them. I showed them how pretty they are when you cut them open; they were fascinated. Yes, they enjoyed them too!

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  18. What beautiful color! I also love using purplr potatoes--the kids get such a kick out of the color. And thanks for the history lesson--I didn't know those things, either!

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  19. I love the colour! Do you want to exchange with my mashed beet potatoes :))

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  20. We're anticipating receiving a shipment of purple potatoes next week-- can't wait to try your recipe. A true celebration of color and health!

    Great post!

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  21. I find purple potatoes more creamy than the normal white potatoes. Mash potatoes are one of my fav and comforting dish. This looks so pretty and beautiful :)

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  22. What a beautiful potato dish. The purple color is so vibrant. I also enjoyed learning the history of these tasty potatoes.

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  23. Thx Jean! They stay bright purple even the next day for leftovers. Hi Barb, True, I don't want to post a new recipe for same reason:). Too pretty! Love purple too! Thx Bri and Lora, yes some of the info was new to me too. I am such a nerd! Lisa, thx w/brisket sounds perfect! I wish I had some matza ball soup. Marlney, thx & my pleasure. I hope you find them soon! Aren't they Bridgett, thx for dropping by. @aspoonfulofyum thx it's amazing how we learn something and discover ingredients we didn't know about before. Happy you did and I am always at awe when I discover something new too. Thank you Lana and Happy Easter to you! Thank you Kamakshi and Sanjeeta yup they survived for the shoot and we didn't devour them before had a chance. Thx Renee, My pleasure.Thank you Soma. What a wonderful idea to make latkes w/them. Thx for the tips, I will try them next time. I like the water melting the potatoes so I guess steaming will just a bit longer but interesting technique I am going to try. Thx ken, your trip to Europe will be your sprinkle of lemon. Soon!! :)Thx Deb. My pleasure!! Thx Kulsum I hope you find them!

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  24. Thanks Kay and Deb, I am happy your stepsons loved them! Thanks Elle, happy your kids like them too! I am such a geek but love diving into the informationL). Thanks Alison and Pepy yes lets exchange or better yet I will make youa new batch!! Josi, How wonderful. Let me know when you do and how did they turn out!Thx Kankana and so true! Thx Dara and I was fascinated too! The wealth of information out there is incredible!

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  25. Everyone: Lemon juice or a little white wine vinegar both have enough acidity to keep potatoes from turning gray too. We, at the Idaho Potato Commission, recommend a Tablespoon per gallon of water. Give it a try. Beautiful pics and nice history writeup, it really adds to the desire to make the recipe.

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