holiday appetizer baked potatoes

Choosing The Right Potato

It’s that time of year again, when we all gather around the table to celebrate the holidays. We share in our love of food with friends, family, colleges and neighbours. It’s become a tradition that I host my family and friends for dinner every year. My guests look forward to new dishes, as I tend to change it up every year. Variety is the spice of life, and potatoes are no exception!

My kids love potatoes. The challenge for me is that one likes mashed, another prefers roasted, my son loves baked and my husband craves a simple potato salad. One potato variety is simply not suitable for all of these dishes.

Selecting the right potato for the job is key when preparing any potato dish. With so many varieties to choose from, walking into a grocery store and choosing a potato can be a bit overwhelming. Not to worry, I’m going to give you a brief Potato 101 to simplify the process

White potatoes are best suited for boiling. They are great for when you need the potato to stay firm. I choose them when cooking stews, soups and potato salads.

Red potatoes are best for roasting and will also hold their shape after cooking. They are great as a simple, flavourful side dish. The flavour and spice combinations are endless to suit any taste

Yellow potatoes are the ideal potato for mashing. Their creamy, naturally buttery flavour means there is little need for extra butter and cream. Leave the skins on to retain all of the nutrients, including potassium, vitamin C and fibre. Leaving the skins on also uses the entire potato, minimizing food waste and cost.

Russet potatoes are best for baking and make the best fresh-cut fries. The bright white flesh of the Russet becomes fluffy and dry when cooked. When fried, they become crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside.

Remember that preparing a great potato dish doesn’t have to be difficult, it can be as simple as tossing some red potatoes with a dash of olive oil and salt and roasting them in the oven. Choosing the right potato for any cooking application is most important step.

We’ve got you covered with Holiday recipes that your family will love:

Best for Baking: Pancetta and Aged Cheddar Twice-Baked Potatoes

Best for Boiling: Classic Picnic Potato Salad

Best for Roasting: Horseradish Aioli Roasted Red Potatoes

Best for Mashing: Roasted Garlic and Herb Mashed Potatoes