Can you recommend some yummy and unique varieties of potatoes, sweet potatoes and yams I should look for when I’m shopping for Thanksgiving groceries this year?
My favorite sweet potato is ‘Red Wine Velvet’ of the orange varieties, ‘Brazil White’ of the white-fleshed varieties, and ‘Camote Morada’ (a Nicaraguan variety) of the purple-fleshed sweet potatoes. I grow 53 varieties of potatoes, all are favorites or I would not grow them, but I think ‘La Ratte d'Ardeche’ is one of the best and it is favored by the chefs in Paris, as well. My favorite way to cook ‘La Ratte’ potatoes it is to boil or steam them until “al dente” (maybe 12 minutes), so that it is hot through and through but still firm. Then I smoke the potatoes for 20 minutes over beechwood chips. The result is heavenly, and makes a great side dish for just about anything.
— William Woys Weaver, contributing editor to MOTHER EARTH NEWS and Gourmet magazines
We grew ‘Red Norland’ for our summer potato this year, but it’s all gone now. We have moved on to our storage potatoes, which are ‘Kennebec.’ Both are good all-rounders, and can be served boiled, roasted, in soups, chowders, etc.
— Roger Doiron, contributing editor and founding director of Kitchen Gardeners International