We have potatoes on the brain at CEC today.
Its potato buying time, we’ve bought a few pink fir apples from DIY stores (they seem to be few and far between and even more expensive than last year – we’ve bought two small packs, one of which cost £1.99 for 5 potatoes – I think I may be paying for the picture of Jamie Oliver on the packaging, those Jamie Oliver pics cost). We also bought some main crop spuds which will result in potatoes that are better for storing; 1.5kg of desiree and 1kg of maris piper – these we bought through the allotment society at about 75p a kilo. We’ve not started chitting, but we will do, and I’ll try and divide up those measly pink fir apples – see if we can’t make them go a little further.
Down at the allotment we also were chuffed to get a surprise potato harvest when we emptied the year before last’s compost. Brilliant! They may may not be in the best condition having spent the winter in the ground, but they look fine, and we’re looking forward to them as its been a few months since our home grown supplies ran out.
Its gobsmacking to think how dubious people were about potatoes when they were first introduced. We’re really enjoying reading ‘Spade, Skirret and Parsnip: the Curious History of Vegetables’ by Bill Laws at the moment. It describes the extent of scepticism about the devil’s vegetable which was particularly repugnant to protestants who preferred to stick with parsnips. Meanwhile, the French court resorted to subterfuge in order to try and convince starving locals that potatoes were worth stealing by ostentatiouslyguarding a field of spuds, during the day. Fascinating book.