Thursday, October 15, 2015

Don't Throw Out The Potato Water

If you boil peeled potatoes for any reason, don't pour the water down the drain. It's chock full of nutrients and potato starch, which means it's good food.

You can use it in place of milk in yeast bread or quick breads like biscuits and cornbread. Quick breads won't be exactly the same, not bad, just a little different. You won't be able to tell the difference in yeast bread and that includes everything from pizza crust to dinner rolls.

Potato water makes great "milk" gravy and a bonus is that it's easier to make gravy with it when it's still hot, so you can drain the potatoes to mash and make the gravy right away. The gravy will have a slightly translucent look to it, but it tastes fine. Try it and see.

Another place where potato water is welcome is as a base for chowders, cream soups and such various soups as Italian wedding soup. Check can labels from (or while you're in) the store for "potato starch" to see which commercial soups use potato starch (in dehydrated form) in their soup and you'll have an idea of what can be done with it.

If you can't use it right away, it will keep three or four days in the refrigerator. Shake it before using it because the heavier bits will settle to the bottom. If you can't use it up before it goes bad, it can be frozen for a few days, but don't try to keep it much past a week. It tends to turn gray and look unappetizing. It won't hurt you at this stage, but your family probably won't eat it.

About the only thing you can't use it for is desserts or other sweet dishes.

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