POTATOES are this week’s Fresh Pick of the Week at the valley’s Certified Farmers’ Markets. There are several varieties of POTATOES available at the markets. Choose from white rose, pink rose, red, Yukon gold, Russet, blue, and fingerlings in a variety of colors!
Although the colors, shapes and sizes vary, all POTATOES have a very similar flavor. They are not, however, all the same, when it comes to cooking. Russets, for example, are high in starch, so they are better either for baking, or for mashing (because they tend to crumble and fall apart when cooked). Conversely, most white and rose or red varieties are low in starch, and are therefore better for boiling and roasting, or in recipes (scalloped, au gratin, etc.) because they hold their shapes better when cooked. Yukon gold and blue or purple potatoes are medium starch potatoes and are often referred to as “all purpose” potatoes. Fingerlings (of all colors) are low starch potatoes.
Wild potato species are native to the Western Hemisphere, and grow from the United States (in the North) to Uruguay and Peru (in the South). Although Peru is the birthplace of the potato, over 99% of the almost 4,000 varieties of potatoes cultivated throughout the world today are descendants of a subspecies that is indigenous to south-central Chile.
Did you know: POTATOES are the world’s fourth largest food crop, and are members of the same plant family that includes tomatoes, eggplant, tobacco, and deadly nightshade.
Price: $1.50/pound and up, depending on the variety.
Also in Season, and available now at all locations: Potatoes, Celery, Green Onions, FRESH and DRIED Herbs, Eggs, Dates, Almonds, Oranges, Grapefruit, Chard, Eggplant, Squash, Onions, Garlic, Apples, Shallots, Beets, Green Beans, Carrots, Tomatoes, Green Tomatoes, Peppers, Lettuces, Parsley, Mint, Broccoli, Cabbage, Spinach, Radishes, Leeks, Brussels Sprouts, Asparagus, Cherimoyas, Dates . . . . PLUS, incredible artisan breads, fresh meats, cheese, fresh raw honey, California olives/olive oil/vinegars, and a wide variety of exotic Orchids and flowers.
The Certified Farmers Market is sponsored by the Palm Springs Cultural Center. It operates in four locations, and on three different days of the week, as follows:
- On Saturdays in Palm Springs, from 8:00 am to 12:30 pm, adjacent to the Camelot Theatres in the Palm Springs Mall parking lot at 2300 E. Baristo Road at Farrell.
- On Saturdays in Coachella, from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm. Location tba
- On Sundays in Old Town La Quinta, from 8:00 am to 12:30 pm, at 78100 Main Street, just a few blocks west of La Quinta City Hall off Calle Tampico.
- On Wednesdays in Palm Desert, from 8:00 am to 12:30 pm, at the Palm Desert Chamber of Commerce, 72-567 Highway 111.
Contact the Certified Farmers Market at 760.898.5250, 760-285-2630 (se habla Espanol), or visit us online at www.certifiedfarmersmarket.org.
The Palm Springs Cultural Center is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, which was established to encourage the development of the cultural arts in the Coachella Valley with a specific focus in the areas of film, fine art, live performance, dance, music, and community festivals. The Center is dedicated to advancing education, to nurturing community-wide participation in the cultural arts, and to sponsoring scholarship awards for deserving individuals.