Potatoes. Types and what each is used for

Of all the potatoes in the store, which one to choose?

Many of these colorful and different potatoes are not seen in Spain, except in some restaurants or gourmet stores. 

Although we do have a wide variety of white potatoes that can confuse us when choosing the best for our dishes.

Didn’t it happen to you that, when buying a bag of potatoes, they fit you well in some recipes but not in others? Have you ever wondered why some potatoes are soiled and others are washed? Can you use a potato to cook, to make it fried? Oh! How many questions for the potato!

A visit to the market becomes a time riddled with decisions. How not to make a mess! How not Well, reading this that we put below:

In search of the perfect potato for your dishes.

If I want to make fried potatoes and, another day, roast … do I have to buy several different bags? It looks like it is.

Let’s start by classifying potatoes according to their ripening cycle:

Early potatoes

  • They are collected before the end of their natural maturation cycle. More or less between April and June.
  • Dishes: for roasting and steaming, they go very well. Ideal for making  Russian salad , omelette, seasoned potatoes, fried potatoes, aioli , fried potatoes or steaming.
  • Characteristics: they are small, with thin skin and contain a lot of water. You have to use them quickly. Nothing to store them because they spoil. They have more vitamin C than the old ones and fewer calories.

Seasonal or semi-late potatoes

  • Summer is yours. They are collected between June and September.
  • Dishes : they are the most versatile. If you are not sure what dishes you are going to make, you will have a good “wardrobe” with these potatoes.
  • Features : they are bigger than the previous ones and hold better. But it is ideal that you do not store them for long.

Late or old potatoes

  • They are collected in January. Comparing them with the previous ones, it could be said that they are “old”.
  • Dishes : undisputed queen of stews, some Rioja-style potatoes, for example, creams, purees and sauces. Since they have a lot of starch, they “fatten” the liquids.
  • Characteristics : they are those that are sold without washing, because that layer of earth protects them from light, which is what most damages it. They have thicker, darker skin, their flesh is more yellow.

I facilitate. More or less the picture clears up and we can enter the classification of potatoes according to the use we make of it.

Do you remember before we talked about there being 6,500 varieties of potatoes? Well fasten your seatbelt, some of them are coming.

Potatoes available in Spain. Most common varieties

Versatile potatoes : Kennebec (you have them Galician –IGP Galician Potato- and Catalan -IGP Patata de Prades-), Monalisa, Spunta, Desireé, Elodie or Vivaldi.

These really are a perfect closet for the cupboard. Of course, the Chinese on the corner may not be as exquisite in its variety of products, so look for those of semi-late maturity. 

Potatoes for cooking

Kennebec, Monalisa, Buffet, Spunta, Flamenco, Jaerla or Red Pontiac.

Potatoes for cold dishes and salad

Undoubtedly, the Red Pontiac , which holds great in the fridge once it’s cooked. Ideal for salads .

Roast potatoes

Kennebec, Spunta and Flamenco. Although, in general, the early maturing ones are very good. For example, our famous roasted potatoes .

Omelette potato

Galician Kennebec and the Monalisa from Alava. But if you don’t get them, the potatoes are also good for a Spanish omelette.

Potatoes for frying

Baraca, Agria (this is only for frying), Kennebec, Spunta, Caesar, Bintje, Draga, Felix, Nagore and Monalisa. Do you remember that we said that the late ones were more resistant? That is that they endure hot oil, so when in doubt, look for these.

But there is more. As we said before, there are many varieties and within them are some that are very special like potatoes.

Old or Canary potatoes

There are up to 46 different types in the Canary Islands, only. And they all go well for wrinkled potatoes. Among them we find the black potato, the beautiful potato, the borralla, the melonera or the red one of baga.

Choose well and your recipes with potatoes will be delicious.

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