About Red La Soda Potatoes

August 20, 2006

About Red La Soda Potatoes

“There are over 400 varieties of potatoes grown at the moment, but ask for any one of 396 at your supermarket and you will be met with a rude comment or, even worse, a vacant stare,” writes Bert Greene in Greene on Greens (Workman Publishing, 1984). Indeed, one of the potato varieties we get from Farmer Frank, the Red La Soda, is considered commercially unviable, even though both it and the Dark Red Norland are the dominant, high-yielding varieties of red-skinned potatoes in the West. La Soda’s deep eyes, for example, make the potato difficult to peel, and it loses its bright red color in storage (hence its reference as a “fresh-market” potato). Because the Red La Soda is resistant to tipburn (browning of the edges or tips of leaves), however, as well as to wind, heat, and drought damage, it is well-suited to our southern Arizona climate (heat, as you might imagine, presents the biggest challenge of growing potatoes in southern Arizona).

Red La Sodas, however, don’t need to be peeled: in fact, much flavor resides in the potato skins themselves, and since Farmer Frank doesn’t use chemicals, you needn’t be concerned about fungicides, pesticides, and other undesirables concentrating in the skin. (If you feel compelled to peel them anyway, don’t throw the skins away—use them to add flavor to a soup stock.)


Due to its low starch content, the Red La Soda has a creamy texture and is good for boiling, because it holds its shape when cooked. Its firm, waxy texture is perfect for gratins and potato salads. (By contrast, the buttery Yukon Golds we receive from Farmer Frank are good bakers and fryers, due to their higher starch content, which gives them a more granular or mealy texture.)

Nutritious Value

Potatoes have fewer calories and more nutrients than rice, pasta, or bread. Contrary to specious rumor, the potato is not fattening in the least; butter and cream are! A naked medium-sized potato has less than 100 calories, and boiling reduces the calories to a scant 80. The reason they are low in calories that potatoes are 75 to 80 percent water. High in vitamin B (including niacin, thiamine, riboflavin, and pyridoxine), the potato is really good for you—as well as being good to eat.”

One Response to “About Red La Soda Potatoes”

  1. caglar keskin Says:

    Potatoes are one of the most common vegetables all over the world. They are cheap, easy to cook and have so many health benefits.
    You can bake them, boil them, microwave them… everyone can make something to eat with potatoes.I will start to grow tomatoes
    in my farm and now learning watever i can about them, thanks for information. I also found another good site
    about potatoes and so many other methods of agriculturing, i recommend you to take a look.


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