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This item was last sold on : 08/13/20
Marble potatoes’ size and shape give them their name. They are very small in comparison with more mature potatoes, up to the size of a ping-pong ball, and are usually round or sometimes oblong. Because marble potatoes can be a number of potato varieties, the skin and flesh may be white, yellow, red, or even purple. Regardless of color, the skin is very thin and delicate, so is usually left on for eating rather than removed. The taste of marble potatoes is buttery and sweet since they are harvested early in the season before much of the sugar in the tubers turn into starch.
Marble potatoes are available in the summer.
Marble potatoes are sometimes known as baby potatoes or new potatoes—the small, young tubers from potato plants, which are harvested before the rest of the potatoes. Young potatoes are harvested from potato plants while the leaves are still green, while mature potatoes are given more time to grow larger and are harvested after the leaves have died back. Marble potatoes can be any variety of young potato (botanical name Solanum tuberosum).
Potatoes are primarily composed of water, carbs, and some protein and fiber. They contain very little fat. The fiber in potatoes is mostly insoluble and found in highest concentration in the skin. Potatoes also contain some potassium and vitamin C.
Marble potatoes can be boiled, fried, or baked whole or smashed. They are not the best potato to use for mashed potatoes because of their low starch content. Wash gently and then prepare simply with butter or olive oil and a variety of herbs such as parsley, thyme, or chives. Vinegar, garlic, and shallots also pair well marble potatoes. They make excellent potato salads. Marble potatoes should not be stored for long periods like mature potatoes. Instead, they can be stored in a paper bag in a cool place for a few days but should be eaten soon after purchase or harvest.
Potatoes have been an important part of Andean culture for thousands of years. Wild potatoes, the ancestor of today’s potato varieties, actually contain toxic compounds. People in the Andes Mountains observed local animals licking clay before eating wild potatoes. They discovered that the plants became edible when eaten with edible clay, which sticks to the toxins. Over time, people bred domestic potatoes that contained fewer toxins. Those earliest breeding efforts led to thousands of different varieties, many of which are still grown in the Andes. The potato varieties available commercially outside of the Andean region pale in comparison to the total number still grown there.
Potatoes have a long history spanning continents. They were first grown by several different groups of people living in the Andes Mountains, where they were a dietary staple. The Spanish invaded the region in 1532 and brought potatoes back to Europe. Potatoes became a staple there too, and even reduced widespread hunger during the 17th and 18th centuries before a crop failure in the 19th century caused famine, most famously in Ireland. Today, potatoes are grown worldwide, but particularly in South America, North America, and northern Europe.
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