What's on the Menu?

Making potatoes a trendy choice

Published in the January 2016 Issue Published online: Jan 06, 2016 Gwen Rassemusse
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Potatoes are still seen as a traditional meal element by the majority of consumers, and that, for the most part, is a good thing. This perception, however, can cap the culinary potential of what is perhaps the world’s most versatile vegetable. Getting people to change the way they see and use potatoes is an immense and immediate challenge facing the potato industry. Gwen Rassemusse, recipe developer at S’cuizin in Paris, has some suggestions:

Surprise Element

In my job, I try to find new ways to use potatoes. We tend to have trendy dishes in France, like the culinary hamburgers popular these days. I make the hamburger bun using colored potatoes. The point is to give people something surprising and unexpected. To me, using potatoes in trendy dishes is a great way to change the way people view them.

Conscious Choice

One of the latest food trends, which will play a role in the years to come, is using honest, regional products. People are making more conscious food choices and are starting to look at how products are made and where they come from.

Healthy Choice

More and more people are following special diets, like gluten-free or vegetarian. Potatoes are perfect because they’re so versatile. They can be prepared as a main course or used as a binding agent or flour substitute when making a cake. I have a recipe for delicious chocolate muffins made from potatoes.

More Practical

In my opinion, the potato industry can stimulate the use of potatoes by focusing on their practicality. The fact that you have to peel potatoes and that they take a long time to cook is seen as a disadvantage. Developing smart products can make preparing potatoes even easier. Instead of being seen purely as an end product, potatoes should be seen as an ingredient.

More Fun

Vegetable varieties in different colors such as carrots, beets and radishes are extremely popular. However, colored potatoes are relatively unknown. While consumers find them attractive, they aren’t widely available.

I like to compare [using] colored potatoes to a child who has only ever used a grey pencil and is suddenly given a box of beautiful coloring pencils. Colored potatoes add an extra dimension to dishes thanks to the color, the taste and the texture. My favorite is the two-toned potato. The result is always different depending on how you cut them. It’s fantastic!\

Budget-friendly Choice

Finally, I’ve noticed that more people want budget recipes. Potatoes are perfect for this. By getting creative, anybody can make affordable and extremely healthy meals with potatoes.