The biggest PR campaign for the humble spud returns next month when Potato Week (7-13 October) launches across the UK.
This year, Potato Week is focusing on helping the industry grow value sales as it encourages consumers to “trade-up” from generic whites to named varieties. In-store promotions, recipes and an advertising campaign will send the message to consumers that great named varieties are worth paying a little bit more for.
Potato Council marketing manager, Kate Cox, said: “We know that some varieties already have higher recognition with shoppers; for example 81% could name Maris Pipers, and by encouraging customers to trade up just once during the year will deliver a real boost to the sector.”
Author and food stylist Jo Pratt is fronting the Potato Week campaign, and has shared two of her favourite potato recipes for Farmers Weekly readers to try at home.
STICKY ORANGE POTATO CAKE
“A weird idea maybe, but this is a sweet cake made with potato. It tastes delicious and is gluten free too. It is sticky, moist and provides a great talking point when people find out it is made from potatoes,” says Jo.
Makes a 20cm cake
Preparation time: 25 mins
Cooking time: 60-70 mins
350g Maris Piper potatoes, peeled and quartered
200g butter, softened
155g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 large eggs
175g ground almonds
2 tbsp baking powder
Finely grated zest and juice of 2 oranges
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
3 tbsp granulated sugar
1.Cook the potatoes in a steamer set over boiling water for 15-20 minutes, until tender then press through a potato ricer or mash well, then set aside to cool.
2.Pre-heat the oven to 180ºC /fan 160ºC/gas 4 then butter and line a 20cm deep round cake tin.
3.Beat together the butter, sugar and vanilla extract until light and creamy. Gradually beat in the eggs, then mix in the ground almonds, baking powder, cooled mashed potatoes, orange and lemon zest. Spoon into the cake tin, smoothing over the surface and baking in the oven for 45-50 minutes.
4.While the cake is cooking put the orange juice in a small saucepan and bring to the boil, reducing by half. Cool, then stir in the sugar. When cake is just firm and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.
5.Remove from the oven and leave in the tin for 15 minutes then turn out onto a wire rack to cool. Spoon or pour the orange juice mixture over the cake and allow to cool completely before slicing.
SAUSAGE, CHEESE AND POTATO PIE
“Comfort food and a tasty balanced meal too, this is a recipe which is much loved by my kids,” says Jo. “They adore it as baked individual pots accompanied with a side of sweetcorn and peas.”
Feeds a family of 4
Preparation time: 15 mins
Cooking time: 35-45 mins
750g Maris Piper potatoes, peeled and quartered
1 tsp olive oil
1 large onion, thinly sliced
400g sausages, each cut into 4
100ml skimmed milk
50g strong half-fat cheese such as mature Cheddar grated
1 tsp wholegrain or English mustard
2-3 tomatoes, sliced
1.Prepare your ingredients and set the oven to 200C/fan 180C/Gas 6.
2.While waiting for the oven to preheat cook your potatoes in boiling water for 15-20 minutes until tender. While the potatoes are cooking, pop the sausages under the grill until golden.
3.Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan and gently sauté the onion for about 8 minutes stirring occasionally until caramelised.
4.Drain the potatoes and return back to their pan mashing well with the milk, the mustard and some seasoning.
5.Put the sausages and onions in the base of a pie dish spooning over the mash before scattering over the cheese and laying on the tomato slices on top. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until the top is bubbling and is lightly golden.