Favorite things to do: dig potatoes

Good thing that I'm not on E-harmony....that title wouldn't likely get me a date!

But...there is something wonderful about digging potatoes out of the ground.  There's a plant, a mound of dirt and about 1/2 dozen or so edible jewels under each plant.  Unless you've grown potatoes yourself (or have a neighbor who does and is generous), there is just no describing what a new potato toted 50 yards from the garden to your kitchen tastes like.  The same can be said of corn...as soon as it is harvested, there's the cruel clock of nature tick-tocking away and breaking down the starches.  So picking just before preparation yields an incomparable succulence.  A little butter, salt and pepper are all of the accoutrements needed.

I liken digging potatoes to looking for Easter eggs.  My husband is very picky about how I should dig potatoes (as if it is frickin' rocket science!).  Well, I've dug more potatoes in my youth than he ever has in his adult life...nevertheless, he is still hyper-critical of how I do it.  Oh well.... (However, he knows that he is safe because if I declared my true interests on e-harmony or match.com no  man would linger on my profile!). 

I dug the last few mounds of potatoes.  We've been eating them almost every night, and we've not tired of them. I wished I had some fresh parsley (I didn't plant any!).  New potatoes with some garlic, butter, and a squirt of lemon are wonderful....and  great accompaniment for fresh fish.

I've found that simply piercing all over the potatoes and microwaving them in a FreshVAC container is a quick, easy and delicious way of cooking my new red potatoes.  Why I didn't not discover this before this year, I do not know.  But it steams them just right.  If you boil them, sometimes they cook too much and get water logged (or I just got distracted!).  Cooking them in the Freshvac in the microwave provides the best consistency--and they are ready in minutes for consumption or for dicing and cooking with a bounty of squash.  I like to roast peppers too and add them into the mix along with some onion, salt and pepper and paprika.

If you are looking to try something new in the culinary area, I'd like to encourage you to roast fresh, hot peppers.  Roasting hot peppers takes the bite out of them and really deepens their flavor.  Because hot peppers are so small, you can roast them quite well over a gas flame.  I don't try to roast cayenne's due to their slim profile.  I roast my peppers over the gas flame of my cooktop.  While it is best to have a grill basket, I use my stainless still spaghetti insert (with holes).  I managed to ruin my grill baskets while undertaking a very ill-advised experiment with my ceramic grill which involved smoking a chicken.  However, molten aluminum is quite a beautiful thing...and not something that you will want to see near your skin.  See picture to left.

 I was not harmed, but I had some sainted grill baskets whose metal melt points were exceeded. Good thing I don't have an interest in crystallizing meth at home.  You'd be reading about me in the paper--a news story and an obituary. 


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