Tuesday, July 17, 2012

New Potatoes and Green Beans

July 4th we dug our potatoes up and that night, we got to enjoy new potatoes with green beans frozen from last year's garden. Every year, I set the tiny little potatoes we find to the side just for this dish.When I say tiny, I mean anything that is the size of a grape or larger.

I have fixed these with seasoned store bought green beans and from fresh. When there are leftovers from fixing a huge pot of fresh picked beans; I vacuum seal and freeze and use them when the "new potatoes" come in.

Growing up, I had only heard of Idaho and Russet potatoes. When my Dad would raise a garden, we always went out and picked up the brown potatoes he dug up. To my knowledge, red potatoes didn't exist until I had moved to the country. I'm sure I saw them in the grocery store, but I had never bought them. There was a sweet, elderly gentleman, Mr. Moore, who stopped by the house one Saturday and asked me if I wanted any "harsh potatoes." Harsh potatoes didn't sound very good to me and I said no. I later found out this old timer called red potatoes Irish potatoes. He had raised a big crop and was looking to sell them and this city girl was quite clueless.

To prepare potatoes:
Wash and scrub skins with a vegetable brush.
Do not remove skins.
If they are over one inch in diameter, slice them in half.

Based on using either of the two sets of directions for cooking green beans linked above, if you use beans out of a can, put the potatoes in when you start cooking. If you are making these from fresh beans, add them after the beans have started to get tender, about an hour. At that point, you will be slow-cooking the beans for another hour and a half or so and the potatoes won't have time to turn to mush. They will have time to absorb whatever seasonings are in the pot.

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