I cooked some near-rotten potatoes and they offered a flavour far surpassing other potatoes. I long to taste it again.
I had some red potatoes lying around that I hadn't gotten around to cooking. I decide to make poutine with them with some fresh cheese curds I have. I start to make my poutine recipe, and when I wash and begin to cut the potatoes, oh god no, the smell, the smell! I suspect they're rotten, but the skin is still reasonably tight and despite one or two points of soft rot I cut off, they are still fine with no growths. My cheese curds are too fresh to pass up and I don't want to get other potatoes, so OK, lets proceed.
What followed was one of the most surprising gastronomic experiences of my life, these potatoes are incredible
! They have a taste I'm simply not equipped to describe, surely nothing like I've ever tasted in a potato or poutine in a life of eating reasonable amounts of both. I'm absolutely floored by the very peculiar experience of eating these spuds!
OK, so I try and make the recipe a few days later, buying the same potatoes, curds, and using the same oil and method. But they don't taste the same, they just taste like ordinary potatoes. I try a few more times and I can't get any result but the same regular taste.
I'm beginning to suspect it was the fact that the potatoes were right at the point of spoiling that gave them their extraordinary taste. I'm now now leaving out some potatoes to experiment at various stages of spoiling to replicate the taste. My question is; is there any kind of basis to this? Could a not overly rotten potato have a very different flavour from other potatoes? Is there any precedent for foods tasting considerably better in such a state? From my preliminary research I've only found people discussing how to avoid rotten potatoes, and the idea that when eating such plants (fresh == better) is strongly ingrained in me. Is there anything grounding this possibility?
This is a picture of the style of potato I'm using, so called "organic type"
Here's my method:
- Olive oil and butter in pan, heated
- Cut potatoes, put into oil, leave on low-med heat until one side cooked to satisfaction
- Rustle the potatoes around to cook the other edges after the one side is done & add pepper, salt, other spices
- Put on curds & perhaps other toppings when done