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February - National Potato Month

Potatoes, the new world's contribution to the world's food basket.
Potatoes, the new world's contribution to the world's food basket.

Potatoes, it’s hard to think of a kitchen without them, but of course our European ancestors were “spud” challenged until their introduction by the returning conquistadores who brought them back from the Andes sometime in the late 16th century. Even after their introduction they were a long time catching on. At first, Europeans tried to use them as “pot-herbs,” and being in the Nightshade family, the foliage is poisonous. By the mid 19th century however it had become an important field crop.

Being an adamant native Californian, I should like to point out that the much lauded “Idaho” potato, did in fact have its origins right here in California, in fact, just a few miles from where I live here in Sonoma Co. Luther Burbank, botanist, horticulturist and pioneer in the field of agricultural, developoed his “Burbank,” potato at his experimental gardens in Santa Rosa, California and the Idaho potato is a variety of Burbank’s creation.

In the first decade of the twenty first century the average person worldwide consumed about 70 pounds of potatoes each year. In the past the highest consumption in the world was in eastern Europe, however that is rapidly changing. China is now the world’s largest potato producing country.

The following link, Potatoes, has an excellent chart about the various varieties of potato currently in cultivation and their uses.

Hopefully you will find some of THESE RECIPES useful.

You may read more of my work and find a lot more recipes and information on my website, The Questing Feast .

And, you may now listen to me on KGGV the Bridge, 95.1 FM, lp or streaming world wide at KGGV the Bridge .

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