August 10, 2015

Try growing one of these colorful potato varieties. 

Kevin Fogle

Break away from the same old boring potato varieties this year, and consider growing some new and interesting cultivars. With a range of bright flavors and vibrant colors, these four potato varieties can help upgrade your weekday meals and be used in a range of gourmet recipes.

1. Purple Peruvian Potatoes

This distinctive heirloom harkens back to the earliest potatoes grown in the Andes. The plants are quite hardy, and the potatoes that store well. A true fingerling potato, the Purple Peruvian plant produces small- to medium-sized tubers that feature deep-purple skins with a bright-purple flesh. These vibrant purple potatoes are high in starch, will retain most of their color when cooked, and are well-suited to both frying and roasting. As with many colorful fruits and vegetables, the Purple Peruvian potatoe also contains a high amount of antioxidants, some of which survive the cooking process.

2. Yellow Finn Potatoes

A tan-skinned potato with gold-colored flesh, the Yellow Finn is a highly productive cultivar that makes it a great choice for most home gardens. The potatoes are round to pear-shaped, medium-sized tubers that are wonderful baked, mashed or fried and have a great creamy sweet flavor. The tubers are known to spread out underground far from the plant, so be sure to search far and wide for them.

3. Cranberry Red Potatoes

These are not your traditional red potatoes available at your grocery store. The Cranberry Red potato features bright-red skin with rose-tinted flesh and produces a heavy yield of medium to large potatoes. Also known as All Red potatoes, they’re low-starch spuds that are amazing for both boiling and sautéing. Even after cooking, the flesh retains its pink hue, making Cranberry Reds a unique choice for dishes like potato salad. These nifty heirlooms yield a colorful harvest that will keep well and liven up your dinner plate for months to come.

4. Kennebec Potatoes

Kennebec potatoes are large, oval-shaped and ivory-fleshed and reach maturity between 80 and 100 days in most regions. Known for their thin tan-colored skin and smooth regular surface, Kennebec are regarded as high volume producers with good disease resistance to common potato viruses and blight. Kennebec potatoes are sought after for their culinary versatility and are especially good when used to make homemade French fries.

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