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Science

Mmm ... Purple Disease-Resistant Potatoes 277

Posted by Hemos
from the eight-a-day-is-all-you-need dept.
the_ph0x` writes: "An article on Reuters describes a new breed of potato as being resistant to disease, able to grow in low nutrient soil and ... purple. Not all that interesting unless you're from an area where blight is a problem. At least we'll know we can always live on potatos, which who doesn't anyway ... mmm purple tater-tots." Combine it with the hideous green ketchup Heinz is making, and eating can be like a Kadinsky ? painting!
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Mmm ... Purple Disease-Resistant Potatoes

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  • Anyone know?
    • The article makes it seem like they just happen to be purple, that this potato strain just evolved that way.

      Yeah, fine and dandy, but just wait until EVERYBODY is planting this variety. Can you say Ireland, 1840?

      • Re:Why Purple? (Score:2, Interesting)

        by chetohevia (109956)
        Purple potatoes are widely available in South America. They're also found in some fancy grocery stores in the US. Just like green and yellow and purple tomatoes, they are now regarded as "heirloom" varieties, and grown only for the novelty. Like the red carrots with more beta carotene, or the blue and purple corn sold for decorations (quite edible, although not as "saleable" to picky american eaters) it's perfectly natural.

        The homogenization of varieties led to blight spreading too easily, and rediscovery of "heirloom" foods (popularly tomatoes and roses-- the tomatoes are tastier and the roses better-smelling, although not as good for shipping long distances) has become something of an organic-hippie fad. That's good.

        If everything becomes purple potatoes, i imagine it'll be back to homogenization again. :(

        a.

    • > Why Purple?

      The pests think it's eggplant, and won't touch it.
    • Why white? (Score:4, Informative)

      by hey! (33014) on Tuesday September 18, 2001 @02:47PM (#2316428) Homepage Journal
      I used to work for an organization that sponsored antropological research in S. America. I saw an interesting paper given on potatoes, which I'll try to remember here.

      Potatoes are native to S. America, where there are thousands of varieties. People native to that region grow and eat a much greater variety of potatoes than we do, with different shapes (running from round to finger shaped) and colors. This is partly due to the fact that their potatoes tend to hybridize with wild "weedy" strains, and partly because they encourage hybridization. Since potatoes are a big part of their diet,different shapes, colors and tastes add variety. This strategy probably also protects them from poor harvests and pests by spreading their bets across many strains that do better in different circumstances.

      There are probably a hundred or so cultivars we grow in the 1st world which tend to be large, roundish, and have white or yellow flesh. Most importantly they have been selected to have low concentrations of poisionous alkaloids in the tuber. Potatoes are closely related to jimson weed and deadly nightshade and are normally poisonous. Where they eat many more primitive and diverse varieties of pototatoes, the potatoes must be treated specially to remove the alkaloids. They are spread on a blanket or a tarp, trod upon to break their skins and left outside several days to freeze and thaw. Apparently this reduces the concentrations of alkaloids to where they can be consumed safely, although you might still get sick if you aren't used to eating native potatoes.

      I don't know if the flesh or the skin of this particular potato is purple -- probably just the skin, although I suppose it is possible that the flesh might be colored. Yellow flesh is not uncommon; green is a sign that a potato wasn't properly handled and may be poisonous. The interesting thing is that it apprently this strain came from European gardens. They could probably develop a number of useful new strains by hybridizing with wild potatoes.

    • Re:Why Purple? (Score:3, Interesting)

      My parents are from Trinidad (just off the coast of South America). When I've been there, I've come across quite a variety of potatoes. Thes included 'sweet potatoes' which had a purple tint to them. They are sweeter than our 'white' potatoes, and had a slightly different texture.

      Yams are also a variety of potato. We North Americans tend to get confused by the color. If you want to try the various styles and colors of potatoes available, skip the Safeway next time you go out to shop, and try some of the (South American) ethnic stores.

      In fact, I'd say just try ethnic stores in general! There is a small Vietnamese grocery near my place. They have all sorts of interesting things that I have yet to try. I've been experimenting, lately with different varieties of rice. I've come to texture the texture of brown rice over plain white, and have started experimenting with sticky rice (wow, incredible!). Never would have tried it if I hadn't gotten curious walking through the store, and asked how to cook these things.

      People are so willing to share their culture and food with us if we only ask. It's incredible what you can learn by asking someone in a store what to do with a 'strange' plant that they seem to know about.

  • Diabetics (Type I) (Score:2, Informative)

    by FortKnox (169099)
    At least we'll know we can always live on potatos, which who doesn't anyway

    Diabetics have to watch their sugar/carb intake. My wife is diabetic.

    Glad I could clear that up ;-)
  • by Wakko Warner (324) on Tuesday September 18, 2001 @01:40PM (#2315836) Homepage Journal
    Them's good eatin'.

    Till you grow a third nipple.

    - A.P.
    • Read the article. Its eat a genetically altered potato, or eat a potato dosed in chemicals.

      The choices almost make themselves!
      • It's not genetically modified. Purple potatoes have been around for as long as, well, the potato.
      • Read the article. Its eat a genetically altered potato, or eat a potato dosed in chemicals.

        The choices almost make themselves!


        Not exactly. I saw a study on a news journal show recently in which the effects of eating genetically altered food were carefully examined. One would expect there to be no difference, but there was actually quite a big difference. Namely, animals that ate the genetically altered food had a much higher incidence of inflamed stomach (or something close to that) than those that didn't. Mind you, this was in a highly controlled lab environment, so the only possible explanation was the variable in the experiment, namely whether they were eating altered food or not.

        Genetically altered food CAN have adverse side effects. Not that it always does, but we should be very wary of tinkering with nature at such a low level.
      • Read the article. Its eat a genetically altered potato, or eat a potato dosed in chemicals.

        You can also grow your own. Most cities sit on top of the most fertile land in their regions (having grown up around the rich farmers on their good land, and then eaten that land). Even people who live in apartments can often grow stuff on their balconies, or inside their windows.

        It's nice eating something that you know where it's come from.

        In many cases, our chemical laden farming methods are self-fulfilling cycles. The chemicals we spray on our farms don't just kill the pests. They also kill the predators against the pests. They're actually worse on the predators, because the pests are far more numerous and more likely to have a mutation among them that allows them some resistance to the pesticide. Thus the pest breeds itself into immunity, but the predator gets squeezed out of the space, so if you stop using chemicals for a short period of time, the pest population explodes until the predator can re-establish itself. Unless the farmer in question really knows what (s)he's doing, they're likely to restart the chemical program just as the predator is regaining a foothold in the area (and the chemical company PR rep will take on an "I told you so" attitude).

    • Damn ye journalistic integrity!
    • I'm still waiting for the ever popular tomacco to hit the market. Dang FDA approval process. So what if it tastes like Grandma?!
    • by mosch (204)
      dont ya tell me what youre putting in my lunch box
      dont tell me what your feeding me today,
      dont fill my head with trouble while im scarfin down a cheese soufle

      i wanna be a new, original creation
      a cross between a moose a monkey and a fig
      i'm ready Monsanto let me be your guina pig

      cuz the seed we sew aint good enough
      the earth we plow it aint good enough
      the food we grow well its never been up to scratch,

      the geezer with the beard and all the angels
      made a few mistakes I dont know why
      we dont need him anymore if geneticly modify

      so dont ya tell me what you're puttin in my lunch box
      i got a crazy pioneering additude
      dont bother me with labels gotta get a belly full of franken-food

      gotta geta belly fulla franken-food

      --Moxy Fruvous [fruvous.com]

    • Same benefit. Third nipple == more food for the little 'uns.

  • Really hoopy food. But they really hate Vogons.

  • by smnolde (209197) on Tuesday September 18, 2001 @01:43PM (#2315860) Homepage
    My dad made some purple potato stuff for a church dinner. Even though they tasted identical to regular potatos, but few people tried them.

    As much as the purple potato is resistant to disease, people are more resistant to change.
  • They aren't new. They've been a staple at organic food stores for years. Of course, how many slashdotters shop at organic food stores ;-)

    The purple potato is one of the ancestral Peruvian ur-potatoes. It's quite high in nutrients and tastes delicious.
  • Matching ketchup (Score:2, Informative)

    by rkischuk (463111)
    You could always color coordinate with purple ketchup [bcentral.com].
  • They have purple ketchup too. I saw it the other day at Meijer. I was almost disgusted that someone would actually decide that this was a viable product to sell.

    Green ketchup is one thing (at least there are fucking green tomatoes), but purple? No.

    This is a sad sad day. Designer vegetables/fruits. Scary ;)
    • Yup... green and purple ketchup... the kids love it.
    • Probably the result of adding red and blue food coloring.

      If you really want something different, try something other than tomato ketchup. Catsup is a generic term for a smooth, chutney like sauce made from fruit.

      Try this link: http://www.recipesource.com/cgi-bin/search?search_ string=catsup [recipesource.com].
    • Green ketchup is one thing (at least there are fucking green tomatoes), but purple? No.
      You could make purple ketchup by adding blue food coloring to ordinary red ketchup (blue+red=purple). I don't know why you would want to do this, but at least it could start out as a normal product. I doubt that green tomatoes are going into the green "ketchup," so it's anybody's guess as to what's used to make that stuff. If forced to choose between them, I think I would be more inclined to take the purple stuff.
  • by FatRatBastard (7583) on Tuesday September 18, 2001 @01:44PM (#2315877) Homepage
    Mmmmm.... purple Vodka.

    Absolut Barney!

    {god damn lameness filter}

  • Do not ingest before drinking heavily; the consequences are too terrible to think about.
  • I hate to be a stick in the mud but how long till blight, or some other fungas mutates so as to effect these potatos? Once we start mass producing it something will mutate.

    Still, it is good news. I support genetic engineering of crops, but if this works well then all the better.
  • Sounds like the perfect side dish for Green Eggs and Ham! (sorry, Ted...)
  • They're pretty old - I've been buying them regularly in the Pacific Northwest for almost 10 years. Very, very tasty. They're usually best baked, then they also retain their purple color through the cooking. When you fry or boil them they lose most of their color and "exotic" appeal.

    The potatoes the article is about are probably a different purple strain, though.

  • Does this mean we'll see our children playing with purple Mr. Potato Heads in the future?
  • by Goner (5704)

    Kandinsky [?] [everything2.com]... heh.

    As in Wassily Kandinsky, the painter... not Kadinsky... some coffeeshop in Amsterdam.

    --

    nutate on e2...

  • More information... (Score:3, Informative)

    by MoNickels (1700) on Tuesday September 18, 2001 @01:50PM (#2315944) Homepage
    Potato Association of America Handbook: Potato Varieties [orst.edu].

    Off-colour vegetables [vt.edu].

    Who says watermelon must be red? [dailynews.com]

    Potatoes of note [ruralvermont.com]. (Potatos or potatoes, either is acceptable. Just not potatoe).

    • Also, photos [taunton.com] of the purple potatoes. Note that the article says that purple potatoes "have always been used" in the Andes Mountains. In other words, they are a natural variety, not one that is genetically engineered.
  • "so obscure it has no name"?

    I hope that's not because it just came out of the genetic engineering lab. What would one cross with to get purple? Sea Anemones perhaps?

    Really, though I like potatos and GM stuff if it's useful and safe. Besides more than likely it really is nature doing freaky stuff, cause she's good at that.
  • You might be able to find blue potato chips [terrachips.com] at your local grocery store. Although they're called blue, the chips look more purple to me.
    • These are actually my favorite potato chips. They are quite tasty, and people look at you strange when you eat them. They taste pretty close to regular potato chips. I suspect the main difference is the oil they are fried in.
  • You know, if you got a bushel of these things, you could put together a beowulf cluster of purple potato servers.

    Just a thought.

  • Soilent Purple is Barney! My God, don't eat it, it's Barney!
  • by Phork (74706)
    puple potatoes are not at all a new thing. They have been around for a long time, though most people havent seen them. They are more common in expensive gourmet restaurants than in dennys, i frequently buy them at the local farmers market. purple doesnt meen genetically modified.
  • Potato Eaters (Score:2, Informative)

    I've heard of Big Purple People Eaters and now
    we can be Big Purple Potato Eaters.

    Or according to this recipe:
    Purple People Eater
    3/4 oz rum
    1/2 oz vodka
    1/2 oz gin
    1/2 oz tequila
    1/2 oz Triple Sec
    1/2 oz blue curacao
    1 oz sour mix
    7-Up
    splash grenadine

    Combine all liquors and sour mix in a cocktail shaker with cracked ice and shake well. Pour into a collins glass, fill with 7-Up and top with grenadine.

    We can become Purple People Eater Drinkers!!!

    Please don't say you can beowulf these...
    • As the late Trader Vic once said, "Why anyone would want a drink made with Blue Curacao is beyond me."

      Here's an Easter special. It isn't purple, it's pink, it's the Jellybean Cocktail:

      Put some ice in a tall glass.
      Add about two fingers of Ouzo.
      Pour in some grapefruit juice.
      Add a little Grenadine to give it some color.
      Stir and sip.
      (You could add an olive, but I would skip it.)

      In most of the world, there's no such thing as a doggie bag -- Prof. Kelly Brownell
  • by RollingThunder (88952) on Tuesday September 18, 2001 @02:03PM (#2316083)
    They're just an odd variety - although as some other posters have mentioned, purple potatoes are not completely unknown. These purple potatoes are special because of their disease resistance, that's all.

    I'm not sure if it's the skin, though, or the entire potato that's purple. The article wasn't very clear.

    But in any case, the article is talking about how these will be a boon for ORGANIC farmers. I've not heard of a real organic farmer that used GM species, they tend to hate that more than pesticides!
    • by Kwil (53679) on Tuesday September 18, 2001 @02:16PM (#2316188)
      Depends on the variety.

      I buy food from the local farmers market, and we actually get quite a variety of blue/purple potatoes. Some varieties have a purplish skin. Cut it in half and you'll find the flesh is like a normal potato with the exception of a ring of blue about a half inch in from the skin. This typically fades somewhat in the cooking.

      Others have a much more bluish tint to the skin. These varieties also tend have the entire flesh colored a washed-out blue-purple. They keep their color when cooked.

      As to the taste, well.. it's a potato. There's hardly any difference between the lighter ones and your normal red potatos that I can tell (I'm no gourmet, though). The darker bluish ones I tend to think taste a bit better than regular potatos. They have a more... potato-ey.. flavor. Not sure how to describe it. It's as if they have a bit more of the essence of potato in them. Quite good, especially cubed and fried with a little olive oil and sour-cream to dip.

    • They're just an odd variety - although as some other posters have mentioned, purple potatoes are not completely unknown.

      True... I saw some on Emeril's tv show on the Food Network the other night.

  • I've been growing purple potatoes for several years now. They are actually called "All Blue". They are blue/purple inside and out. There are also red varieties which are red/pink inside and out.

    Potatoes originated in Peru, where they come in a variety of colors: purple, red, white, yellow, sometimes all mixed together.

    I haven't had much problem with disease, but the Colorado Potato Beetles are a real nuisance.

    Check out www.irish-eyes.com and look at all of the different potato varieties they carry.
  • I've gotten those in CA for years! Not genetically modified, but still yummy.
  • Even the link into everything2 is wrong. `Kadinsky' is apparently some dope smoking coffee house in Amsterdam. Maybe they paint there, maybe not. everything2 is silent on the matter.

    Wassily Kandinsky [everything2.com] was a painter. Check him out over at Thinker.org [thinker.org], this link [famsf.org] ought to get you some of his works. Thinker will probably die under the load. You should also look at This guy's kandinsky page [ibiblio.org].
  • ... appears to be resistant to all fungal diseases and so may not require any chemical treatment.

    It is very likely that it is resistant to all potato fungal diseases. At least if it is, it won't be for very long.

    -Sean

  • {From the side of a box of tater tots, in the future}

    HEY KIDS!

    Ever wonder what tater tots used to look like when your parents ate them as kids? Look at the purple tater tots in the green Heinz ketchup. Continue staring at them without moving your eyes while you count to 30. Then look at a blank white sheet of paper and you'll see an image of the potatoes amd ketchup in their old colors like your parents used to eat!

  • Maybe we can finally power a Beowulf cluster of these. [d116.com] (the potato-powered Web server, for those too lazy to click).


    Personally, I'd like to cut up a cluster of these and fry them, then do a review on the Official French Fries Pages [tx7.com]. And with neon green ketchup from Heinz, the page will certainly be memorable.


    woof.

  • But can you use them to power a webserver?
    :)
  • by _Mustang (96904) on Tuesday September 18, 2001 @02:24PM (#2316262)
    This made me wonder if any serious and long term studies have been done on the concept of "cues" in the food chain. The way I understand it, evolution has decided that colour is closely tied into our abilities to determine edibility and such. That's one of the reasons why we know for example, that a ripe tomato is the red one.

    Using this example of purple potatoes; I see a real problem with the colour from the health aspect. Most normal potatoes get an off-white blotch when mold sets in and this is a fairly obvious cue that it's gone bad. Other vegetables have similar behaviour signaling their end. Taking this to the logical extreme suggested by this article, what happens when designer-coloured veggies are the norm? Are we going to have to relearn, and relearn again the signs of *bad* for each new vegetable-of-the-day?
    • Maybe they could engineer the purple potatoes' "off-white blotch" to be that symbol that Prince changed his name to.

      ~Philly
    • Other vegetables have similar behaviour signaling their end. Taking this to the logical extreme suggested by this article, what happens when designer-coloured veggies are the norm? Are we going to have to relearn, and relearn again the signs of *bad* for each new vegetable-of-the-day?

      Who the hell cares what color the mold is? If there is an extra vegetable growing on the one I bought, I THROW IT AWAY!

    • I'm pretty sure we haven't evolved to detect cues in McNuggets for their edibility, but we can still figure it out. All seriousness aside, Humans have only begun eating tomatoes fairly recently. They are part of the nightshade family (as well as potatoes and eggplant), and were thought to be poisonous [palomar.edu] until the 1800's.

      As for purple potatoes, they are not genetically engineered or out of the ordinary in anyway other than lack of popularity. I've actually bought "blue" potatoes at the market that look purple to me, and are definitely purple after being cooked.

      Even if they were rainbow colored, I really don't think it matters too much. We eat rainbow candy and icecream, chicken feet dim sum, oysters, bird nests made of spittle, pig's blood cakes, and all sorts of other things that our bodies probably aren't built for. So no need for the deity to decree that purple potatoes are "unclean".

      LS
    • Red chilli
      Purple grapes

      I don't think color says anything about what a food tastes like or their edibility. The only cue something is wrong is when there's a patch that's DIFFERENT colored to the rest of the item.
    • Actually, the potatoes you are used to seeing (white to yellow) are the results of genetic "modification" done through cross-pollination and hybrid work. Purple is the color of many of the original wild potato strains. Some interesting links:

      The Potato Then & Now: History [ic.gc.ca]
      History and Origin of the Potato [sunspiced.com]
      Indepthinfo's "Potato! - History" [indepthinfo.com]

      There is evidence that the potato was cultivated (i.e., selectively grown as opposed to collected from the wild) more than 4500 years ago. You will have a hard time finding any food in its original wild version, from potatoes to tomatoes to carrots to wheat to cows.

      There's good and bad points to selective cultivation/breeding. The smell was "hybridded" out of roses, but they get long, straight stems, few thorns, single flowers on a stem, large buds that stay closed for a long time... just about everything that people want in cut flowers. We have nice, big heads of broccoli with lots of florets and few leaves.

      I am not thrilled with GM foods, but not so much based on the "unnatural" aspect as from the lack of long-term safety studies and testing.

      If you get your kicks walking through 2,000 acres looking for edible plants in their wild and natural/original state, more power to you. I have trouble looking for a few edible mushrooms on 2 acres, and there are few mushrooms that are as tasty (or as expensive) as the Steinpilz (boletus). I'll stick to supermarkets.

      woof.

      You wouldn't believe how serious a lot of people take potatoes. I found out once I started the Official French Fries Pages [tx7.com].

  • World Potato Atlas (Score:2, Informative)

    by kingdon (220100)

    As people have pointed out, there are a zillion varieties of potato, some of which are purple. Even at the time of the Incas there were thousands of varieties, many/most of which survive to today. Here's the South America page [cipotato.org] from the World Potato Atlas. And no, until 10 minutes ago I didn't know there was such a thing as a World Potato Atlas, but it has more information than I ever imagined would be on the web about where potatoes are grown, what kind are grown, and so on.

  • "At least we'll know we can always live on potatos"

    Just to set it straight (for the poster and for Mr. Quayle):
    It's potato, not potatoe.
    It's potatoes, not potatos.

    It's like hero, heroes...
  • someone to claim hat they have a patent on blight-resistant potatoes, or colored food stuffs and sue patent infringement.
    Don't laugh, as it has already happened here in the US and Mexico over yellow beans.
  • by mach-5 (73873)
    This is good news considering that potatoes are a staple food supply for some countries. This could possibly help the world with food shortages.

    One thing I wonder about though...did they test if the potato is insect resistant as well in their laboratories? It may be virus/bacteria resistant, but will it attract some weird worms or insects (or animals even) that will destroy the crops? Maybe there is a reason why this variety was never cultivated in some countries...because it could not survive due to some interaction with other plants or animals.
  • by blamanj (253811) on Tuesday September 18, 2001 @02:46PM (#2316426)

    The responses here show how much we've become factory farm zombies. Carrots are orange, potatoes are white, apples and tomatoes are red, etc.

    In fact, what we're used to is what's convenient to ship or grow. If people were more concious of genetic diversity, we'd already have much more color on our plates. Orange carrots date from the last few hundred years, originally they were white or yellow or red. Apples came in various shades an combinations of yellow, red, and green. Corn can be blue, as well as potatoes. Tomatoes have a fantastically varied set of colors.

    Some of these are now becoming known as "heirloom" varieties as people begin to understand how bland and overprocessed our diets have become.

  • Extra planetary (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Lonesmurf (88531) on Tuesday September 18, 2001 @02:58PM (#2316532) Homepage
    What I think that everyone here is missing is the obvious application of this on extra-planetary colonies. Yes, I know that we don't have any now and that we aren't likely to have any in the next hundred years. There are two reasons that this is very exciting: there aren't likely to be very many nutrients in the soil of, say, mars and diseases will mutate faster because of the increased radiation on other planets without an atmosphere. Also, as was recently hypothesized, there may be microbes in places other than earth and they are likely to not be very healthy for the plants and vegetables that we are going to eat..
  • by pointym5 (128908)
    If you've never seen purple potatoes cooked, you'd be amazed at how beautiful they are. The purple is a really rich color, like the mineral sugelite. I've made them as straight boiled/salted potatoes, i.e.: wash and peel (or just partially peel, if you like; just peel a strip around the potato's waist), then place in a saucepan and just barely cover with salted water. Cook over a strong fire mostly uncovered until the water is almost cooked away or the potatoes are fork-tender. Then, carefully drain off most of the remaining water, drop in a good lump of butter, cover the pan, and return to a very low fire. Wait a minute for the butter to melt, then (holding the lid firmly) shake the pan sharply a few times. Let it go a couple minutes covered, then uncover and allow the potatoes to get starchy on the outside. These look just spectacular on a plate.


    You can also cut them in big chunks and make "steak fries". They look normal on the outside (i.e., brown), but they're purple on the inside.


    I've never had a guest flip out over the color, other than to remark on how nice they look.

  • can be found here. [sunspiced.com]

    Potatoes as with other agricultural crops have several varieties which thrive depending on the climate and soil quality. Many have mutated over the years to combat pests in their environments and these are the ones being rediscovered. Usually these varieties do not have the productivity qualities desired by the farmer who wants to produce the most out of his land.
  • So there is a link to Everything2.com for an explanation of who Kandinsky is, pretty good, since everyone might not know what a Kadinsky painting looks like, right? The only thing strange here, is the page on Everything2 only talks about a coffe house in Amsterdam. You have to go to the bottom and click on "Wassily Kandinsky" to see anything about the painter.

    Seems like the editor should check those links before putting them up!

    Good thing I already know what a Kadinsky painting looks like.
  • I've actually eaten purple potatoes...the wife brought them back for me from a farmer's market in Philly. These were regular potatoes grown in coloured water (coloured by the organic agent that prevented beetles i'm told) and they were very very cool to slice up, as you could see the packets of starch that would build up inside (and, I'm told again, cut them out if you're on a low starch diet).

    They tasted just like regular red potatoes, and when I fried them up Saratoga style they made a very pleasant addition to a banquet-style spread we had for our halloween party.

    I might add that they cost a bit less than the russets they had at the same market, and didn't taste anywhere near as the six dollar per pound organic russets I buy at the organic market when I make a batch of my super spicy Megabyte fries. Want the recipe? I'm afraid it's carefully guarded and heavily encrypted, but one of the secret ingredients is "sweetened cornmeal".
  • "Purple shit--it's not just for Cookie Monster any more."
  • That's nothing. They're going to be introducing purple ketchup next. I figger for my Mardi Gras party I can serve hot dogs garnished with green and purple ketchup and yellow mustard. Lots of fun until the kids get hyperactive and you come down with cancer.

    Seriously though, there are "natural" strains of potato that are purple, so it's not like it's some kind of freak.

    Now, I'll get me a blue Nehi and settle back and enjoy the FD&C rainbow.

  • Combine it with the hideous green ketchup Heinz is making

    Heinz also makes purple ketchup. I saw it in my local supermarket.
  • Anyone wondering about who kadinsky was... you'll likely become rather frustrated looking it up. Wassily Kandinsky [google.com] is the artist's name. Very nifty stuff, his.
  • My wife and I "subscribe" to a Community Supported Farm which, for about $25 or $50 per month spread throughout the year, you receive a box of organic produce biweekly or weekly, respectively. Said box contains whatever they plant and whatever's in season at the moment.

    Having been a normal supermarket shopper until a few years ago, these boxes contain spectacular produce. Nobody usually remembers that tomatoes aren't supposed to be hard, bright red and crunchy (or pasty).

    Anyway the point is, they've had blue/purple potatoes in that box for years -- probably not the resistant kind. They're good and kind of fun to eat.

    Beyond that, there are all kinds of funky tomatoes you've never seen. Last week we got these green tomatoes that were striped kind of like a watermelon. They were tart yet ripe -- really neat. There's yellow ones all gnarled up that are really good, orange, red, of all shapes and sizes.

    All kinds of other funky foods come. Did you know there are many types of garlic some of which really are better than the standard grocery store Italian? Ever had a ground cherry (a bit like a tomatillo but sweet)?

    The point is, there's a lot of "odd" foods out there that really aren't odd at all. We've just never seen them because it's so much easier to grow a field of identical, drought-resistant, disease-resistant, shipping-friendly idaho spuds than anything else. I encourage people to support their local farmer's markets and try Community Supported Agriculture -- not only is it earth-friendly but you get cool vegetables as well!

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