National Potato Day is Aug. 19, giving North Carolina residents the perfect opportunity to celebrate “new” potatoes. North Carolina farmers produce early-crop or summer-harvested potatoes, which are on the market during June and July. These new potatoes are both fresh and delicious because they are not stored for long periods of time like many “old” potatoes grown in other states. Since potatoes from North Carolina are never stored, this means that they could arrive in grocery stores just 48 hours after being dug.
New potatoes include potatoes such as round whites, which have a smooth, light tan skin and a waxy texture, and round reds, which have a firm, rosy, red skin and white flesh. In addition to their fresh taste, new potatoes have tender, thin skins, so there is no need to peel them. Also, they are highly nutritious. New potatoes contain only 100 calories per medium potato, 3 grams of fiber, and are low in sodium and fat while high in vitamin C and potassium. Check out the NCDA&CS Marketing Division’s webpage to learn more about where you can find the state’s best and healthiest new potatoes.
If you’re looking for a way to incorporate these vegetables in your diet, try the New Potato Casserole recipe below, which serves six.
• 2 dozen small new potatoes
• 2 cans cream of chicken soup
• 1 cup grated American cheese (or ½ cup American and ½ cup Monterrey Jack)
• ¼ cup diced onion
• 1 tablespoon butter
1. Boil the potatoes until they are fork tender, then peel if you prefer. Peeling is not necessary.
2. Sauté the onion in butter until it becomes soft.
3. Put the whole potatoes in a casserole dish and pour the soup over them.
4. Mix the onion with cheese and spoon this on top.
5. Bake in the oven, at 400 degrees Fahrenheit, for about 15 minutes.