Ohiofarmgirl's Adventures in The Good Land is largely a fish out of water tale about how I eventually found my footing on a small farm in an Amish town. We are a mostly organic, somewhat self sufficient, sustainable farm in Ohio. There's action and adventure and I'll always tell you the truth about farming.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

What's in your sink? Taters!

The new crop of taters are in!

 What's in your sink? Taters are in mine!

Whoot! I love me some fresh new potatoes. For the longest time I couldn't figure out the difference between new potatoes and regular "old" potatoes... but here it is: New potatoes are fresh from the ground and haven't been "cured" to store. The curing process toughens up the skin. But the new potatoes have the thinnest skin and are just beautiful.

Want to know what we did with them? We roasted them in duck fat!

Hands down these are the best taters EVER. Recipe compliments of my buddy, Bourbon Red who served 'em up with roast duck.

We were lucky enough to get about 50 lbs of seed potatoes last fall for free!  A buddy had them left over from his farm market. We had Yukon Gold, Red Pontiac, and regular old bakers. The mix of taters really added some zing to this dish. 

Nothing is easier than planting potatoes. Just dig a shallow ditch, toss them in, water,  then mulch well with clean straw. When the tops die out just grab your pitchfork and dig them out. Not only are you having a great time on a tater treasure hunt, but you are also turning the soil and prepping the bed for fall planting. What could be better than that!?!

Back to the dish...
Aren't they beautiful?

Clean and cut to uniform size. Set them to boil in a huge pot of cold water. Turn off the heat and leave them in the water while you finish up the rest of dinner.

Drain well then toss with salt, pepper, flour and....melted goose or duck fat. Oh... can you smell the heavenly aroma now? I just put my baking pan in the hot oven with the frozen duck fat, let it melt, then poured the hot fat over the taters in the same bowl I used to flour them. Then poured the whole shootin' match back on the hot baking pan... and back into the oven. Bake, all in one layer, in a hot oven for about 45 minutes or until crispy and delicious.

We served ours up with Greek-seasoned turkey stuffed zucchini boats. Everything from this meal came from our yard except the salt/pepper, shake of flour, and a little bit of cheese. Cost of goods for us to have 3 meals - about $0.50 total.

What's in your sink? Hopefully dinner. If not - get out there and get your supper! Happy tater time everyone!


Chai Chai said...

Hmmm, We have been told to wait two weeks after the tops turn brown before digging them up - how long did you wait?

The food looks great - again.

Ohiofarmgirl said...

hey CC! Yep, the "wait until.." is part of the curing process.

I waited about 5 mins and that was how long it took me to walk down the hill, hose off the taters, then walk in the house to wash them again in the sink.

A great reference is Barb Doyen's spectacular, The Farmer's Wife Guide To Growing A Great Garden And Eating From It, Too!: Storing, Freezing, and Cooking Your Own Vegetables.

Indeed, a long title. But she has great homespun "institutional" knowledge that all the scholars and scientific-y types couldn't possible know.

And she has great, and easy, 'farmy' recipes. I love that she says that farmers aren't afraid to use butter and cream. She's definitely my kinda gal.

But back to the taters... theoretically you could probably get two plantings of taters - one for mid summer harvest (the Amish harvest really early here) and then again for fall storage. I know you have a short season, but well mulched it could work. Or you could plant a bunch, eat some as fresh and leave some in the ground for later harvest and curing.


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