Potatoes 101: What you should know about the different varieties

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The humble potato is often underestimated with consumers being unaware of the great potential that lies in this versatile and much-loved vegetable.

Potatoes South Africa has classified spuds into three categories, which is helpful for deciding which type to buy for a specific dish and which is suitable for a specific cooking method.

Here they are:

Waxy (Cultivars include Mondial, Fabula and BP13)

Waxy potatoes have a high moisture content and a low starch content. During boiling, they stay firm and keep their shape, which makes them ideal for any dish where you don’t want the potato to break up, such as a potato salad. They are not suitable for cooking in a microwave and not at all suitable for mashing. They can be used for chips but will make a “slap” chip and not a crisp chip.

Waxy/floury (Cultivars include BP1, VDP, Fianna, Valor, and Sifra also known as the Bianca)

These potatoes are somewhat moist with a slightly floury feel. They retain their shape during cooking and can be used for all cooking  methods. These are the variety most commonly available in supermarkets.

Floury (Cultivars include Caren, Darius and Avalanche)

This variety has a low moisture content and a high starch content. They do not retain their shape when boiled and are excellent for making mash. They also make the best crisps, chips and roast potatoes, which are crispy on the outside and soft and fluffy inside.

Love potatoes? Try this potato and corn braai bake, mushroom potato bake, baked potato with pesto and bacon.

Also – have a look at our 7 potato recipes that will put you off Banting forever.

Publication – Food24

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