Who knew that starchy food on the side of your plate had a day, National Tater Day is a time to celebrate the potato a nutritious vegetable that provides essential vitamins, minerals and fiber.
National Tater Day is observed annually on March 31. Whether you prefer the sweet variety, yukon golds, russets, or some color be sure to whip up some of your favorite taters in honor of the national holiday. You can do just about anything to a potato — baked, boiled, steamed, roasted, mashed, hashed, fried, grilled or scalloped (anyway you like them) and they’ll taste amazing. The potato is in fact a major staple in my meals, since I’m a picky vegetarian and it’s one of my favorite go-to foods.
Pre-heat the oven to 425 degrees and start by giving the potato’s skin a good scrubbing under warm water. Next, place the whole potato on the aluminum foil and lather the skin in olive oil (we use extra virgin olive oil). Once the potato is covered with the oil sprinkle on the sea salt and close the aluminum foil. By adding these ingredients on the skin you’re helping the natural flavor the potato to be released, as well as provide a crunchy, yummy exterior. We first learned this trick from Hillstone’s Restaurant (formerly Houston’s) who have the best baked potatoes hands down!
Let the potato cook for about 45 minutes or until soft, use a fork to test the center’s softness before serving. As the potato cooks, make your fix-ins’. I love making the potato my meal so we add vegetables on top that include: broccoli, carrots and snow peas. Use a few drops of extra virgin olive oil to a sauté pan then add the carrots first because they’re dense and take longer to cook. After the carrots sauté in the pan for a few minutes add your broccoli and 1-cup of veggie stock. Finally add the snow peas into the mixture a few minutes before serving so they’re cooked but still crisp.
I’m a cheddar cheese fanatic, so I add that on top of the vegetables after layering them into the spud. Now, of course you can add anything to a baked potato so get creative! Feel free to add beans for a good source of protein, sour cream and chives or even bacon.
Pre-heat the oven to 475 degrees and start by giving the potato’s skin a good scrubbing under warm water. We leave the skin on to give the fry a good crunch. Slice the potato into wedges (too thin the potato will be soggy and break, too thick and it won’t taste like a fry). Coat potatoes with oil/spice mixture and place on a baking sheet. We used sea salt and pepper for these fries, but you can use just about anything to spice up these delicious taters: garlic powder, chili powder, paprika, rosemary, etc. Bake in the oven until golden brown (up to 35 minutes).
Since they’re baked not fried you can save on calorie intake and still enjoy this delicious staple of American culture. We love making these as a side for lunch or at summer BBQ’s our friends and family eat these up!
How do you like to dress up your taters? Let me know in the comment section below, I’d love to hear your potato recipes and don’t forget to post your tater photos here and use hashtag #nationaltaterday to show off your love for this starchy food.