Blue Congo

in gardening •  last month

Those of you who are with me for a bit might remember I've mentioned violet potatoes around 3 months ago. Today was the day of final harvest, but I was picking them up couple at a time for a month now, so I can already make a summary on both the process of cultivation as well as their usefulness in kitchen.

I've started with 3kg of seed potatoes. The end result is maybe 6-7 times that much in total. They came out pretty small, but that's most likely my fault. My grandmother scolded me for planting them in three rows on the patch that she said could hold at most two. Turns out she was right.
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Potatoes grow by themselves. All I had to do was to plant them (sprouts up), earth them up once they had grown up a bit and water sometimes during dry weeks. No pests tried to eat them, they bloomed beautifully and gave green tomato-like berries (not edible!). Once the main plants started to die it was a sign the potatoes are ready to be picked.
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The main thing that makes these potatoes stand out is their color. It is not just the skin - they are violet inside too.
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They boil surprisingly fast - while other potatoes of similar size might need 20-25 minutes to be ok, these start to disintegrate already at 15 minute mark. Due to their texture they are ideal ingredient of any dish that needs them soft, like mashed potatoes, kluski śląskie (Silesian dumplings), kopytka (no English name apparently) or knedle (another type of dumplings, often made with fruits inside). The drawback of dumplings is that you need to add flour and eggs which dilute the color making it more greyish than violet.

Time for some food pictures :o) (regular potatoes added for comparison)

This one shows their color best (boiled whole, then peeled, cut and reheated on a pan; with pork chop and pickled zucchini)
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Baked halves with fried eggs, chicory and cherry tomatoes (I actually made a lot more and ate them all off-picture - baked potatoes are the best!)
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Sort of potato casserole (some people make it with cheese, but cheese is for pizza; I make it with bacon and sausage, sometimes also cabbage and beetroot)
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Lazy-cut fries around baked salmon with dill and cucumber salad.
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Mashed potatoes (with fried onion), chicken breast and fried vegetables plus buttermilk.
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Knedle śliwkowe (potato dumplings with plums)
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Potato pancakes actually look quite normal.
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Overall I think this potato variety is really good. I'm definitely planting them next year, but on wider patch and with better soil so they can grow bigger.

One more thing. My closest family members have no trouble eating these potatoes, but neither my grandmother nor aunt/uncles wanted to try them. Would you hesitate to try eating something if it was of unusual color? :o)

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i love unusual! but i'm not eating potatoes, so i might have to just salivate over these pictures :D damn, you did eat a lot just for the sake of taking pictures :P

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No no, I eat because I like eating, but I did prepare these dishes just for the sake of pictures :o)
When I cook for myself I never bother to do the hard part: to make sure all elements of the dish are ready at the same time. For example I'd normally eat cucumber first (whole, who needs to make salad...) while oil was still heating up, then eat fries as soon as they are ready, while salmon was still in the oven, then eat the fish separately in the end. It's easier that way, and I even remember reading somewhere that this is actually correct way of eating, because different enzymes are needed to digest vegetables compared to meat etc. (at least I like that explanation :oP)