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Grocery Hacks

This Simple Trick Keeps Potatoes from Turning Brown

Photo: Shutterstock // Ahanov Michael

Keep your potatoes pearly white and looking tasty with this simple hack.

When preparing a meal for guests, there are so many ingredients to chop, proteins to marinate, and sides to prep, you’ll want to make sure all that hard work pays off. The last thing you need is a side dish full of gray potato salad or a muddled brown mash.

Here’s how to keep potatoes from turning brown, so they’ll be worthy of both your finest dinner party and your casual weeknight meals (these mashed potato dishes are perfect for either!).

Starch is the problem

If you’ve ever cubed a potato only to come back to a brownish-gray mess on your cutting board 10 minutes later, you’re not alone. Potatoes brown quickly when exposed to fresh air because they are jam-packed with starch. When these starches are exposed to oxygen, they undergo a process called oxidation, which leaves your potato with a grayish or brownish tint. They’re 100% edible, but instantly less appetizing.

Slow browning with water

The easiest (and most common) method for protecting your precious potatoes from browning is to use cold water. When sliced spuds are placed in water, the oxidation process slow.

Make-ahead tip! Sliced, shredded, cubed, or really any kind of peeled potato can be stored in cold water for about 24 hours before any noticeable change happens to the potato’s structure or texture.

Grated potatoes (like the ones you need for these creamy hash browns) brown even faster than cubed ones, so waste no time getting them into water. Fill a bowl with just enough cool water to cover your potatoes by about an inch. Place your mandoline and grater directly over the bowl and grate straight into the water to keep your potatoes as white as possible.

Psst: Are you making this dangerous mistake with your mandoline?

Acid stops it altogether

As mentioned above, placing spuds in water will slow the oxidation process, but it will not stop it. If you’re planning to store your potatoes in water for more than six hours, say overnight, adding a bit of acid is a good idea.

Lowering the pH of the potato helps fight off oxidation. Just like you squeeze a lemon on sliced apples, a bit of lemon juice or white vinegar in the bowl with the potatoes will ward of gray hues. Use the ratio of one teaspoon to a half gallon of water to get all the anti-browning impact with no notable flavor changes.

Now that you’re ready to party with the most beautiful potatoes possible; try out our favorite scalloped potato recipes

Categories
Hit-Or-Miss

Glass Potato Chips Exist And Here’s How To Make Them

Are clear foods becoming a thing? Last year, we wrote about a restaurant that created an exclusive see-through pumpkin pie, and it looks like the trend is continuing in the form of a glass potato chip.

YouTuber My Virgin Kitchen shows us this interesting recipe to create the peculiar snack. No, it’s not actual glass, so put away your pitchforks.

Through some simple food science, he created a stock out of roasted potatoes and combined it with potato starch to create a clear gel. He accomplished this by combining the two ingredients over heat, turning the stock and starch mixture translucent. The starch’s reaction with water causes the solution to thicken for a jelly-like consistency.

Once it cools for a bit, he adds the gel to a squeeze bottle and forms small potato chip shapes over a baking tray. He then bakes them for about 8 hours at 135 °F. Once they’re out of the oven, he flash fries them for a few seconds.

Even though the process is extremely time-consuming, the final result looks pretty damn cool.

If you’re inclined to impress your dinner guests, give this recipe a shot. Just be careful, these chips look like they’re easy to misplace.

Categories
Restaurants Video What's New

Michael Jordan’s Restaurant In NYC Sells Gigantic French Fries

Ever wonder what the biggest French fry in New York looks like? All you have to do is head over to Michael Jordan’s The Steak House NYC with some measuring tape and an empty stomach to experience it for yourself.

In celebration of National Potato Day last month, the steakhouse’s head chef created enormous single French fries made from entire Idaho potatoes. Each fry measures at about 6.5 inches long and 2.5 inches wide. An order comes with three pieces of the deep fried potato and three dipping sauces: truffle cream, spicy chipotle, and MJ’s famous steak sauce.

Foodbeast’s sports lover and resident scientist Constantine Spyrou had this to say about Michael Jordan’s starchy entree:

“He’s got a 3-peat of fries and a 3-peat of sauces.”

He added:

“If those are Michael Jordan’s fries, Kobe’s are McDonald’s. Obviously, Lebron’s fries are the soggy fries at the bottom of the Burger King container.”

That boy sure hates Lebron. Almost as much as he hates Burger King.

Located in Grand Central Station, the bar and restaurant can be found on the balcony under the constellation ceiling. Patrons with a love of thick-cut potatoes will definitely want to shoot their shot with these massive gourmet fries. Keep in mind, however, the dish will only be available upon request.

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#foodbeast Culture Fast Food Hit-Or-Miss News

“Potato Cartel” Forced Unsuspecting Americans To Pay Higher Prices For Fries

If you’ve ever eaten a potato in any form over the least decade—whether it’s French fried, baked, mashed, or roasted, then you’ve likely paid way too much, albeit unknowingly. Yes, those coveted fast food fries you’ve been eating multiple times a week should have cost you much less than you have been paying.

According to a study done by California State University—Northridge business law professor Melanie Williams, potato farmers across the United States from 2004-2012 formed a collective, limiting their yearly potato crop output, which indirectly raised the price of potato related food consumed by the general public.

Simply put, because America’s potato farmers decided to limit the land they would use to grow potatoes, the market price for their product would rise in accordance to the laws of supply & demand. That means those McDonald’s fries are more expensive because the people that sell their potatoes to McDonald’s is charging them more–the trickle down effect in perfect play here.

Just how much more expensive were we paying for potatoes? Williams’ research indicates that the wholesale price for our beloved spuds inflated between 24% to a ridiculous 49% between 2004-2012.

Because of certain exemptions granted by a federal law in the 1920s, agricultural associations such as the so-called “Potato Cartel” were allowed to control how much farmland they decide to use. Their decision to produce less hurts consumers by driving prices up. What’s more, the lack of regulation creates a legal grey area surrounding the practice and could haunt consumers again in the future.

Categories
Cravings Culture Video

Watch Irish People Try Thanksgiving Foods For The First Time

While our nation frantically prepares for Thanksgiving festivities, there’s a whole different culture on the other side of the world that’s bracing themselves to try Thanksgiving dishes for the first time.

Facts, the channel that lets Irish folks try foods and snacks of different cultures, is opening up Thanksgiving dinner to their test group.

The panel of young lads and lasses try classic Thanksgiving dishes like butternut squash soup, scalloped potatoes, roasted carrots, turkey and cornbread stuffing with cranberry sauce, and pecan pie.

While some claim familiarity with a few dishes, others are trying the holiday staples for the first time ever.

Check out their reactions to Thanksgiving foods to get your saliva  glands nice and moist for the holiday.

Categories
Culture Video

The Surprising History Behind Your Favorite Thanksgiving Foods [WATCH]

You’re sitting down to dinner with your family and and a bountiful spread of your favorite foods are sitting in front of you. The combination of aromas strike your very being every time a relative opens the door. You’ve got turkey, corn on the cobb, mashed potatoes, yams, and tons of other dishes that are sure to leave you full and sleepy long before it’s time to line up for Black Friday.

So where did all this food come from?

It’s Okay To Be Smart, a series from PBS Studios, created an animated short illustrating the origins of some of the most iconic Thanksgiving foods.

Corn, for example, went through about five different mutations over thousands of years before it came to look like the bright-yellow kernels we love today. Turns out, Benjamin Franklin fought pretty hard to have the turkey become our national bird as it was native to North America as much as the bald eagle.

Each dish has an unexpected history that not many people know about.

Before we plunge our forks into our Thanksgiving dinners this year, let’s take a second to appreciate the journey our food went through to get to where they are today. In another world, we could have been carving up bald eagles.

Definitely do not want to try that.

Categories
Fast Food

Pizza Hut Makes Dreams Come True With A Tater Tot Crust

PH-Tater-Tot-Crust

New Zealand once again produces a masterpiece in the form of Hash Bites Crust Pizza. Yep, it’s a pizza with tater tots.

Brand Eating reports, the tots are thrown onto the crust before going into the oven. We assume they’ll be uncooked along with the dough to make sure everything’s golden brown rather than charred.

New Zealand Patrons have the option of paying an additional $3 New Zealand ($1.95 US) to upgrade their crust with tots. You can also order the Hash Bites as a side dish if you don’t want them on your pie.

So the only thing we have to ask is:

Hey, Pizza Hut. Let me have some of your tots.

Photo: Pizza Hut NZ Facebook

Categories
Hit-Or-Miss

The First Thanksgiving And What They REALLY Ate

Hint: no cream of mushroom soup or marshmallow topping

thanksgiving_really_1

Yankee has provided a brief rundown of the foods eaten at the first Thanksgiving, which was celebrated during the fall of 1621 at the Plymouth Colony in modern-day Massachusetts:

venison was a major ingredient, as well as fowl, but that likely included pheasants, geese, and duckTurkeys are a possibility, but were not a common food in that time. Pilgrims grew onions and herbsCranberries and currants would have been growing wild in the area, and watercress may have still been available if the hard frosts had held off, but there’s no record of them having been served. In fact, the meal was probably quite meat-heavy.

thanksgiving_really_2

(via Smithsonian)

Likewise, walnuts, chestnuts, and beechnuts were abundant, as were sunchokes. Shellfish were common, so they probably played a part, as did beans, pumpkins, squashes, and corn (served in the form of bread or porridge), thanks to the Wampanoags.

The magazine also mentions a few items that were not eaten at the feast: “Potatoes (white or sweet), bread stuffing or pie (wheat flour was rare), sugar, Aunt Lena’s green bean casserole.”

Written by Mary Miller // History Buff // Featured image via Community Links