I promised myself that I would add one of these stories here every time I told one. I tell them at one point or another throughout the summer. There will be no chronology - not yet anyway - nor will there be much of a schedule. You never know; I might add a story every day and I might not. This is my life. Every day is an adventure.


Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Hanky-Panky in the Potato Patch

It turns out my potatoes may not be racist or separatists after all, but don't tell anyone. I wouldn't want someone to come out here and impound my potatoes for questioning, or DNA testing. Let me explain:

The last of the potatoes are washed and accounted for. The ratio in the gunny sack given to me by awesome neighbors seems to be about 2 parts red potatoes, 1 part purple potatoes (yes I said purple), with a fraction reserved for white potatoes. I have enough reds left over for another load tomorrow, and then I'll be mostly out of pint jars too. I'll still have some, but not even enough for a single layer in my canner (8), so I'll be bringing in the quart jars next. That's okay; between the purple and the white potatoes, I still have around 50 pounds of potatoes and there's no way they will keep long enough to use fresh. I'll have to whittle them down some more.

The reason I say hanky-panky is because of the appearance of the purple potatoes. They are very dark purple on the outside and in poor light may even look nearly black. Inside, unlike their red and white cousins, they are not white - they are in fact a very striking purple color. Rather pretty if you ask me. I saw my first purple potato some years ago, but there was only one and I don't rightly remember what I did with it. I'm sure we ate it, but I think I'd remember eating a purple potato. They served them once at the lodge a couple years ago and I was really startled, but then I tried some and they are really good - better if you ask me, than any other potato, being sweeter.

Back to hanky-panky: Yesterday, I was cutting up red potatoes, just chopping along, when I cut into one that was blood red inside. I do mean that; it was just as red inside as it was outside - rather startling. Now all along I've seen some with some degree of redness inside - a few lines, some darker than others. But what the heck, I had never grown red potatoes. In fact, I had never even tried red potatoes until rather recently, and since my husband likes them, that's the kind I buy, if I'm buying them. I didn't know but what some home-grown red potatoes had some red in them and it was something they culled out before they hit the market. I mean really, I wasn't thinking a thing of it until I saw that first really really really red potato, and then I thought, aside from the color, 'that's just like the purple potatoes'. I cut up two like that yesterday, and when I pulled the jars out of the canner, the water had turned all red too, like someone had added a couple drops of food color in there.

I cut up another load of potatoes today without seeing another one like that so I didn't think any more about it until I was washing up more potatoes to get ready for tomorrow's batch. I pulled this REALLY dark red potato out the muddy water. Sitting next to the red potatoes, it looked quite purple, and sitting next to the purple potatoes it looked very red (though dark), so which is it? Those I cut up yesterday didn't look any different on the outside than the other red ones. Was there some hanky-panky going on in the potato patch this summer? I would think so, but I suppose we can blame it on the bumble bees, hahaha.

I have no idea how the patch was planted, if the different potatoes were in separate plots at all or if they were just planted as they came to hand. I don't even know if the ratio I mention applied to the whole garden, or if that's just how it worked out in my bag. I'm most assuredly not complaining. A gift is to be enjoyed and relished, and if at all possible passed along.

Anyway, I won't be cutting up those potatoes until tomorrow, but I'm curious what I'll find.

Anyway - us country taters don't know nothin' 'bout political correctedness. We's just simple folk lookin' to git along.


Update 9/26/13
Those really dark red potatoes - they are pretty much what I expected, but substantially darker than the blood red one I cut up the other day. More purple but not as dark as the purple ones. Definitely half-breeds. hahaha 


Update 9/28/13
Yesterday was my first batch with quart jars. Because of the size of the jars, I decided to try whole potatoes, since I wasn't all that interested in packing the jars with as much as they would hold. Remember, there's only the two of us. One quart jar holds 3 potatoes. I picked those that would fit as well as possible; the top one had to be just a mite smaller than the other two. Also, boiled some up for supper so the amount was about right. After supper though, my husband requested that I peel the potatoes in the future. He can't see the peels and being toothless, he can't chew them either.

That first batch of whole potatoes: The skin was all cracked and curled so what the heck, today I peeled and cut my potatoes in half. This allowed for more versatility in the size of potatoes I chose while only making room for roughly another whole potato at the most. Not bad. I also discovered more hanky-panky. Some of those purple potatoes were pretty darn light colored underneath their dark purple skins. hahaha

I also discovered that despite their dark color, they didn't dye the water like the bright red ones did. We'll see when I get to the white potatoes, but I'm pretty sure the water is darker than that will be, but nowhere near as dark as I expected. Same with the potatoes themselves. They don't look white, but they don't look purple either. I wonder if they will be when I open them. We'll see.