Thursday, November 22, 2012

US Potatoes Dinner


Since my Quay Lo and I came together, potatoes are available in our home at all times. There are many dishes I have made with potatoes as an ingredient. As you might expect, these have been either an appetizer or more commonly as a side dish to the main course.  So when I received an invitation to attend a private dinner at the Le Meridian hosted by the United States Potato Board (USPB) last Friday, I accepted, wondering how would it be possible to make an event out of this standard workhorse of carbohydrates that, along with bread, mark a distinction between our household's two food cultures.  Little did I imagine that I was setting off to rediscover an ingredient of seemingly boundless variability and culinary application.


The meal was prepared Le Meridian’s Executive Chef Antoine Rodriguez.


When the guests arrived at the dinner, we were greeted with a room decorated with a large variety of potatoes on display and, though I understood that this root vegetable came in multiple variations, it was still very impressive to see them all together. Based on that alone, I sensed that my regard for the lowly potato had been raised a notch or two. To a cook, whose culinary background had little to do with potatoes, except for an occasional treat of french fries, just walking into the room was an eye opener. 





I would never have thought of using potatos as the center piece of a table setting. "What a great idea" I thought, and "isn't this fun, I am seeing something new to me"!

Before the presentation and cooking demostration started, we were served with potato canapés.

Vichyssoises, best described as a cold potato soup, and 
featuring 3 varieties of U.S. potatos

U.S. Blue Purple potato dumpling filled with spicy
coconut and prawns

US Round Red Potato case with chicken
rendang in this delightful fusion of East & West

US Potato Chawanmushi

Mr. Chris Rittgers the US Agricultural Trade Attaché  gave a welcome speech..

followed by a presentation by Mr. Eddie, a local representative for the sponsor, about the different varieties of U.S. potatos, the history and growing characteristics, the nutritional values, and how the potato became a mainstay crop in the U.S.


This was an informative part of the evening. I was surprised. I mean, after all, if someone suggested that you spend your Friday evening learning about U.S. potatos, would you even consider it? I was glad I had done so. Mr. Eddy had lots of observations to share. For example, we learned that 40% of the utilization of U.S. potato production is for frozen potato products.


After the Eddie’s presentation, Miss Carina Lipold, Health and Wellness Expert spoke about the nutritional values of potatoes.


Not surprisingly, the potato is a power pack of admirable nutritional value.




I was surprised, however, that 100 gms of white potato has a lower kcal value as compared to pasta, rice, or banana.

Next was the cooking demo by Chef Antoine Rodrigues which we were all eager for. 



Chef showed us how he made these yummilicious appetizers from potatoes.

US Russet potato and US Blue Purple potato cake with Garlic and Chives Cream Sauce

Roasted US fingerling potato, Provencal fresh herbs, garlic, chili flake, olive oil


and

US Yukon Gold potato and cheese croquette with Chili
tomato smoked dip

After the cooking demonstration dinner was served:

Chunky long white US potato & clam chowder served with sweet corn, grated cheddar cheese and ciabatta bread crouton



Seared sea scallop, truffle mashed US Round Red potato with parmesan wafer

US Red potato cheese cake and US Blue purple potato chips with  compressed turkey terrine served with cranberry jelly, “jus tranche”


US Russet potato chocolate cake

If you are interested to find out more about U.S. potatoes you might want to visit the United States Potato Board website. 


I would like to thank my friend Shannon of Just as Delish for passing my contact to Jay Mee of EverQuest Sdn. Bhd. so they could send me the invitation. A big Thank You to USPB and Jay Mee for having me and giving me an opportunity to learn so much more about potatoes. Now, I feel I could come up with lots of new delicious and healthy dishes with all kinds of potatoes as an ingredient. 

I will share with you all the recipes of the above dishes in my next post. Stay tuned!


30 comments:

  1. Interesting... I didn't know that potatoes have so many varieties and the food pics making me hungry!!!

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  2. are you potato out yet?? ;) I am curious about the potato chocolate cake... looks yummy! I do admit to have a weakness for potatos... :D

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    1. If you want the receipt I can scan and email to you. Let me know.

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  3. Oooo...potatoes! Melissa would love it all! She loves everything potato!

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    1. Melissa seems to enjoy Western food a lot. The next time you guys in KL, you must come to my house for a Western fusion meal:D

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  4. Potato feast! Out of all these dishes, I like the potato chawanmushi & the croquette. The Japanese potato croquette is one of my fa with their homemade mayonnaise but what I've found the most interested dish must be the potato chocolate cake. Did they use potato flour to make the cake or the fresh potato puree? Very interesting! Thanks for sharing this interesting post with us!

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    1. Jessie, me too, I like the potato chawanmushi too. The croquette went very well with the spicy tomato sauce the Chef prepared. If you like to have the recipe for the potato chocolate cake, let me know. I can email it to you. Still have not had the green light if I can openly share the recipes here.

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  5. Gosh! I am full looking at all your potatoes pictures. And yeah, nice centrepiece.

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    1. hahaha, I could appreciate what you said you feel full looking at so many potatoes. We all felt stuffed after the dinner. LOL!

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  6. Oh today I learn so many type of potatoes. Never know it can turn out to so many delicious dishes. Await for your recipes.

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    1. Vicky, still waiting for green light to share the recipes. If you interested in any of the above dishes, let me know, I will email them to you.

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  7. Blue potatoes sound interesting. I love potatoes and have recently fell in love with Red Potatoes. They are so flavourful and has a very good bite to it. It doesn't become starchy if you cook it for a little too long. I think it will be a good idea for curry chicken :)

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    1. I have not cooked the colored potatoes in curry. I am sure they taste good. It is the season now, you can now get the colored potatoes in many supermarkets here in KL.

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  8. So many intriguing potato dishes. I am most interested to know how the potato chocolate cake tastes like.

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    1. Yen, do you want the recipe? FB me if you do.

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  9. Looks like it was an amazing meal. Happy Thanksgiving!

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    1. Thanks. It was a very interesting meal. The only complaint is we were stuffed! haha

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  10. wow! Didnt know that there's so many types of potatoes!!!I mean, other than russet and orange, purple potato, I know nothing. . . ;P I wonder how Potato and Chocolate taste like.. weird? ;P

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    1. Eunice, now you know. So many of you got curious about the potato chocolate cake. I hope they let me share the recipe openly. For now if you want the recipe, let me know so I can FB it to you.

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  11. Blue and purple potatoes? Beautiful! I am a potato lover and I would dive right in on all those fabulous potato dishes.

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    1. hahaha this meal will make potato lovers very happy.

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  12. What a fun event! I'm so glad you are going to share the recipes :)

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    1. I will if I get the permission to. Stilly waiting for an answer.

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  13. Hi~~
    i m waiting ur next post~~~
    haha!!!

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    1. Welcome to my blog Sabrina and thanks for taking time to read my post and comment.

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  14. hi veron, all these potato dishes are so unique ! so after learning the facts about potatoes and indulge yourselve in all these potato dishes, did you go home and be a couch potato? :D

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    1. How did you know? I was so stuffed with potatoes that I can hardly walk. LOL!

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  15. Delicious dishes and desserts from the humble potatoes, though not so humble after all! I would never have guessed that some of it uses potatoes as an ingredient!

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    1. Yes, it was quite an eye opening isn't it?

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