Boiling And Steaming Potatoes

These methods for cooking potatoes are given in the first recipe in this section. Boiled or steamed potatoes are served as is and are also the basis for many other preparations.

Potatoes are peeled or left unpeeled for boiling and steaming. For most purposes, they are peeled. Peel thoroughly with a swivel peeler and remove all eyes. Place peeled potatoes immediately in a container of cold water to prevent browning.

If potatoes are cooked with the skins on and peeled after cooking,it is best to peel while they are still hot, because the skins pull off more easily. New potatoes are usually cooked and served with the skins on. Fingerling potatoes are peeled after cooking if the skins are tough, or they may be served with the skins on if tender. Two additional points should be noted:

1. Boiled potatoes are generally started in cold water rather than hot.This allows for more even cooking and heat penetration from outside to inside during the relatively long cooking time required.

2. Potatoes are never cooled in cold water, unlike most vegetables.This would make them soggy.

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