After chatting with our aunt, she made a very good point that a meal without potato is missing a limb. That sums up how important potatoes are in all their gorgeous versatility. Plus a good reason why we are excited that fingerlings are the potato of the month. We can happily enjoy their sweet nutty flavour for the next four weeks…
Fingerlings appeared relatively late in potato history – both are Victorian varieties and specifically cultivated to create their unique texture and flavour. La Rattes were Danish and Pink Fir Apples, British, but they rapidly emigrated across the channel to France where they became the chef’s darling.
Anyway, our potatoes, as you will have seen from previous blogs, come from the beautiful Morghew Park in Tenterden, the specialist potato farm which sits on the Kent and Sussex border, who manage to produce such a stunning collection of heritage potatoes.
Mixed Bags or Available Singly
The special offer potatoes this month are available as either single kilo bags, mixed 2kg bags if you like a selection or single 5kg boxes.
La Ratte Potatoes
La Ratte, also known as Asparge potato or La Reine du Touquet. Even though they’re Danish, their legacy is definitely French as Rattes are the chef’s choice for famous French dishes and rich potato purees. Equally they are delicious as salad potatoes or in casseroles and stews, as they keep their shape in cooking. They have a pale cream skin and flesh and a slightly hazelnutty flavour.
Pink Fir Apple Potatoes
Pink Fir Apple potatoes are long and knobbly with a wonderful nutty, earthy flavour. They boil and steam well, keeping their shape and are extremely delicious roasted. They have a pinkish skin and creamy yellow flesh, which after cooking is satisfyingly waxy, soft and buttery.
How to store
Fingerling potatoes are less tough than other varieties as their skins are more delicate, so keeping them in the fridge can actually encourage them to absorb the damp and go off more quickly. Ideally, keep them in a brown paper bag in a dark cool cupboard and they should stay fresher for a bit longer.
How to cook
These are absolutely perfect boiled or steamed as they hold their shape well. Their nuttiness pairs smoothly with a smoked salt or in a salad. Equally, they are delicious roasted. Either way, no need to peel as they are delicious in their skins.
Fingerlings are firm and waxy, which is why they have been so popular in French dishes where they are slow roasted with cream or butter and still keep their shape well.
Here are some more ways to use – plus a really interesting chocolate pastry recipe. Some call for a Jersey Royal but La Ratte would work just as well.
Some ways to use Fingerling Potatoes
Don’t know about you but we can’t resist a roast potato. Fingerlings are sublime roasted and this recipe with chive pesto is a glorious combination of colours. However, til local chives are through we would probably use a delicious spicy rocket or wild garlic, shoudl that still be available.
The Secret Recipe Club has a delicious and healthy protein rich recipe which would make a quick midweek supper with her Roasted Broccoli and Fingerling Gribiche
Pizza and potatoes sounds like a step too far, but the waxy texture of fingerlings actually seems like it should work and provide that smooth creamy base for the blue cheese in this Gorgonzola and Fingerling Potatoes, Radicchio and Rosemary Pizza
As a side dish to a roast, fingerlings can cope with some robust flavours so don’t be put off by combining with strong flavours such as mustard, paprika, pancetta, bacon or other cured meats. Roasted with a mustard crust here.
Or, there are a couple of stunning Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall recipes here which take the flavours one step further with the spicy Italian Devil potatoes and a rich Pan Haggerty, which is a Northumbrian dish of pan-fried potatoes, onion and cheese (we love this version!).
Or, and this one is intriguing and will be on our cooking list next weekend are waxy potato and chocolate pastries – we will keep you updated on that one. This calls for Jersey Royals but La Ratte are perfect (and local) and our feeling is that the potato will be a creamy moist base for buttery pastry.