Potatoes contain many of the essential nutrients
that the dietaryguidelines recommend Americans increase
in their diet. Potatoes eaten with the skin provide
nearly half of the Daily Value for vitamin C and are
one of the best sources of potassium and fiber.
One medium-sized potato has 100 calories and provides
complex carbohydrates needed to fuel our brains
and bodies, giving us the energy we need for a busy
The challenge now lies in educating Americans about
what foods are good sources of these vital vitamins
and minerals. The good news is there are many simple
and tasty ways to add these nutrients into the diet
Nutrients Low Enough to Be of Concern - And How to Get More of Them
Make "smashed" potatoes - mashed in their jackets . Blend a smoothie with nonfat yogurt, a banana and orange juice
Turn the family on to whole-grain cereals . Serve their favorite - baked potatoes eaten with the skin . Add beans to salsas and soups
Serve up a snack of sunflower seeds or almonds . Mix in a little wheat germ when making oatmeal or baking
Encourage 2-3 servings of non or low-fat dairy products daily
Offer whole-wheat breads and pastas . Smear peanut butter on celery sticks and apple wedges
It might surprise some to learn that potatoes top the list of the 20 top-selling fruits and vegetables, ranked by amount of potassium they contain according to AC Nielsen (see entire chart, following). One medium potato with skin contains 720 mg of potassium, followed by one medium stalk of broccoli at 540 mg and one medium banana at 400 mg. Foods that are a good source of potassium and low in sodium - such as potatoes - may reduce the risk of high blood pressure and stroke.
"High in potassium content is just one more smart reason to include potatoes with skins in a healthful diet," explains Katherine Beals, PhD, RD, FACSM, nutrition consultant for the United States Potato Board. "Potatoes are also an excellent source of vitamin C and bring important B vitamins and fiber. A 5.3-ounce potato has a mere 100 calories and contains no fat or sodium. What's even better is that people love them and want to eat them!"
Today, the potato is so common, plentiful and pervasive in the
Western diet that it is taken for granted. We forget that it has
only been with us for a
few hundred years.
The potato is part of the nightshade family and as such does have
some disagreeable traits. One should never eat anything green from
a potato. The leaves
and stem are poisonous. Potatoes should be stored in dark, but dry
places. Light will cause the formation of solanine on the skin of
the potato. Though not
likely to cause serious harm, green skinned potatoes can taste bitter
and may result in temporary digestive discomfort.
When confronted by green skin on a potato, simply peel it away.
Keep as much of the rest of the skin as possible. For this is where
most of the vitamins
reside. Potatoes are one of the most nutritious staple crops discovered
by man. With milk in the diet, it can be a sustaining and healthful
energy, vitamins and minerals both in times of want and in times
Potato Wine or Vodka Lite
Serving Size : 1 Gallon
3 pounds potatoes
4 pounds sugar
4 ounces of Chopped green or light colored raisins
1 tablespoon yeast (wine yeast works best)
1 teaspoon yeast nutrient (if unavailable use 2 more lemons)
Wash and scrub potatoes remove eyes and black spots. However, do not peel the potatoes. Grate potatoes into large pot and add 3 quarts
of water. Bring to
a boil and simmer fro a bout 15 minutes. Remove any scum that may
be floating on top as it contains impurities you do not want in
your wine. Continue to
simmer until scum ceases to come up. Place the raisins and sugar
into a two gallon (or bigger) container that you can put a lid on.
Strain the water onto
the raisins. Juice the oranges and lemons. Add yeast nutrient and
enough water to make the whole amount into one gallon. Let the juice
(also called must)
sit for about a week. Make sure it is loosely covered so that air
gets out but not in. (The fermentation will ensure that the air
pressure forces the air
out of the container. Siphon the must into a one gallon container
with an airlock. (A balloon with a big mouth can be used in place
of the airlock.)
Transfer the wine into another gallon jug after about ten days to
get rid of the sediment that gathers at the bottom of the jug. Let
the wine sit in the
second jug for about 6 months. The wine may then be bottled. Wait
another 6 months to drink.
Potato wine can be used in the same way you would use vodka, only
it has considerably less alcohol content.