Without potatoes, Europeans would continue to have to eat instead of mashed potatoes – mashed rutabagas, season soups with parsnips, serve turnips with meat, and give up Parmentier chips and gratin. Moreover, the possibilities of potatoes are endless: it can be a side dish for almost any dish, and every cuisine of the world has had its own classic combinations for more than one century.
You can make dumplings, soufflés and casseroles from potatoes, bake in their uniforms and just cook – there is an ideal variety for every occasion. In this case, it is conventionally accepted to divide varieties into two large categories: potatoes with a high starch content and potatoes with a reduced content. Starchy varieties are suitable for soups and purees, others for baking, frying and other various tasks.
Boiled, baked, fried, in a uniform, with a crust and puree … and how many more examples you can give! We are talking about potatoes, which in past centuries were served only in aristocratic houses, and now these tubers are the most popular food in every home. Potatoes are high in calories, so you should not abuse them, but you do not need to exclude them from the diet, because they are the record holder for potassium content, which is very necessary for each of us. And here is what else potatoes are useful for, we, with pleasure, will tell you.
Young potato tubers are already available from the beginning of July, but they are fully harvested closer to September.
HOW TO CHOOSE
When buying potatoes, pay attention to the fact that the tubers are firm, even, and evenly colored. There should be no foreign spots, dents or cracks. The presence of a green barrel means that the tubers were stored in the light. This green speck contains a poisonous substance – solanine, be sure to cut off green areas and cook the potatoes. Sometimes unscrupulous sellers pass off old tubers as young potatoes. To check that you are not being deceived, scrape the peel with your fingernail – the skin of a young potato easily scraped off.
- Young potatoes contain vitamin C, unfortunately, the longer potatoes are stored, the lower their vitamin content.
- Potatoes contain almost all amino acids, if you eat 300 grams. per day of boiled potatoes, then you can fully meet the body’s need for carbohydrates, potassium and phosphorus.
- The list of minerals that make up potatoes is impressive: potassium, phosphorus, sodium, calcium, magnesium, iron, sulfur, chlorine.
- Trace elements: zinc, bromine, silicon, copper, boron, manganese, iodine, cobalt …
- The use of potatoes has a beneficial effect on diseases associated with metabolic disorders. Due to its alkalizing effect, potatoes help neutralize excess acids in the body, formed during the metabolic process.
- Fiber of potatoes does not irritate the mucous membrane of the stomach and intestines, so boiled potatoes can be eaten even during exacerbation of gastritis and ulcers.
- Potato starch lowers liver and serum cholesterol.
- Potassium salts help to remove excess fluid from the body, so potatoes must be included in the diet of people with kidney and heart disease.
- Rinse your mouth with raw potato juice for pharyngitis and laryngitis. Gargling with potato juice is also effective for periodontal disease.
- Boiled potatoes are an excellent cosmetic for dry skin and help relieve the burning sensation of sunburn.
- Potato starch is also useful. It is used as an enveloping, anti-inflammatory agent for gastrointestinal diseases.
Remember, potato consumption should be limited to overweight people, and potato juice is contraindicated in diabetes.
The main rule is to follow the recommended daily intake of this product. Exceeding it can cause an increase in total body weight and the development of unpleasant side effects.
Also, do not eat a product whose skin turns green. This indicates that the level of solanine is exceeded in the product, which can have a detrimental effect on the human body, due to the toxic properties of this substance.
The use of potatoes in medicine
Potatoes are widely used in folk medicine. The tubers themselves, the peel, and even its flowers are used. The unique properties of the root crop have a positive effect on the human body and help to cope with many pathological processes.
Potatoes are known for many medicinal properties:
- Helps to clear the respiratory tract with the help of inhalation for various ENT diseases;
- Is able to reduce severe swelling and remove swelling;
- It has an effect on blood pressure, helping to lower it.
For this reason, various tinctures and compresses are prepared on the basis of potatoes, which are used to treat joint diseases. Potato juice is used to treat gastrointestinal diseases. And applying fresh potatoes to the affected areas helps to cope with skin diseases and burns.
The use of potatoes in cooking
Potatoes are a very tasty and healthy vegetable that is used in many countries of the world. First and second courses are prepared from it, baked, stewed, fried, added as fillings to pastries.
Mushroom cream soup
- Potatoes – 200 gr
- Onion – 1 piece
- Mushrooms – 500 gr
- Cream 10% – 250 ml
- Water – 0.5 l
- Greens – for serving
- A few drops of coconut oil
- Salt, pepper – to taste
Wash the potatoes, cut into medium cubes and boil until tender in 0.5 liters of water. Fry the onions in coconut oil until golden brown.
Wash the mushrooms, dry, cut into slices and add to the onion. Fry also until golden brown. Add ready-made mushrooms with onions to boiled potatoes (do not pour out the cooking water) and pour cream over.
Beat everything with an immersion blender. Bring to a boil and turn off. Serve with herbs!
- Mussel meat and salad shrimps – 200 gr
- Mussels in a shell and large shrimps – 200 gr
- Onion – 60 gr
- Leeks – 40 gr
- 15 olives and olives each
- Potatoes – 200 gr
- Cherry – 5 pieces
- Water – 1.25 l
Rinse the seafood, peel the shrimp from the shell, drain and put in a saucepan with water. Let it boil, and then cook for 10 minutes over medium heat.
Meanwhile, cut the onion into half rings, the potatoes into strips. As the seafood was cooked for 10 minutes, add the potatoes and cook for another 10 minutes. Making onion frying (with a drop of coconut oil).
After the potatoes have boiled, add the cherry tomatoes cut in half, olives with olives, fry and salt. Cook for another 1 minute, turn it off and let it brew for 10 minutes. Serve with sprigs of herbs.
How to choose and store potatoes
- When choosing potatoes, give preference to externally attractive fruits: without dirt and cracks;
- When choosing potatoes, take medium-sized tubers, since they contain less harmful substances;
- Don’t buy sprouted potatoes.
- Potatoes are best stored in a dry, dark and cool place.