Wednesday, 7 February 2007

Don't be afraid of the humble potato

Papas AndinasA fascinating fact I found on Kickstart Today, points out:

"Dieters are all scared of eating potatoes, but pound for pond they have almost the same calories as apples. You would need to eat 11 pounds of potatoes to put on one pound of weight. The problem is not so much the potato itself, but the oils, butters and fats that they tend to be cooked in or served with!"

My own "philosophy" on potatoes is this: I need something in my meals that fills me up, something relatively healthy and that contains vitamins, fiber, etc. Compared to other "filler foods", like pasta, pastries and, to a certain extent, rice, the spud seems to do a better job of providing all those needs.

So, rather than being afraid of them, I tend to give potatoes a bit of positive discrimination.

The simple potato baked in it's jacket - dead simple to prepare and quick if you cook it in the microwave. (To get that "authentic" crispy skin, give it the 10-15 minutes in a regular oven afterwards.) Combined with fillings or sauces made from cottage cheese or low fat yoghurts, you need not worry about the calories.

PS: The potatoes pictured above are "Papas Andinas" (Andean Potatoes) grown in the Canary Islands, which are as close as you'll get to the original potato introduced to England by either Raleigh or Drake.

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