Potatoes can be divided into two broad varieties, usually referred to as waxy and mealy, depending on the kind of starches they contain. The familiar Idaho russet is a mealy potato, cooking up to a light, dry and fluffy texture. Yukon Gold or Dutch Yellow potatoes are waxy, remaining dense and moist when cooked. Small Dutch Yellow potatoes hold their shape beautifully when steamed, boiled or roasted, and these are among the most common ways to prepare them.
Rinse your potatoes under cold running water to remove any loose soil, debris or dust. Small Dutch Yellow potatoes have very thin skins, and don't require peeling.
Transfer the potatoes to a pot large enough that the potatoes no more than half-fill it. Add enough water to cover the potatoes to a depth of 2 to 3 inches, then add approximately 1 teaspoon of salt for each gallon of water.
Bring the water to a full rolling boil, then turn down the heat to a simmer. Boil the potatoes until they're tender when pierced with the tip of a paring knife, approximately 25 to 35 minutes, depending on their size.
Drain the potatoes and serve them hot, or cool them and use them as an ingredient in potato salads or other recipes.
Rinse your small Dutch Yellow potatoes under cold running water, and remove any visible blemishes with the tip of a paring knife.
Prepare your steamer according to the manufacturer's instructions, or place a steamer insert inside a large pot and bring it to a boil.
Fill the steamer with potatoes, distributing them evenly. Steam for approximately 30 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender. Serve immediately, or cool the potatoes for later use.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Rinse your potatoes under cold running water to remove any soil or loose skin, then dry them carefully on clean paper towels. Transfer the small Dutch Yellows to a mixing bowl.
Drizzle the potatoes lightly with a high-temperature cooking oil, such as extra-light olive oil, avocado oil, grapeseed oil or safflower oil. Sprinkle them lightly with coarse salt or other seasonings, and toss them until they're well coated.
Arrange the potatoes evenly on a baking sheet lined with foil or parchment paper. Roast them in the preheated oven until they're crisp and browned on the outside, but tender inside when tested with a skewer or the tip of a paring knife. This typically takes 40 to 45 minutes. Serve the potatoes immediately, while they're hot.
- On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen; Harold McGee
- For quicker preparation, use previously boiled or steamed baby yellow potatoes for your roasted potatoes. They're already cooked, so they're ready to serve as soon as they brown.
- If small Dutch Yellow potatoes aren't available, similar methods can be used with other baby potatoes. Larger waxy potatoes such as Yukon Gold or Bintje can also be used; cut them into halves or quarters to speed cooking.
Fred Decker is a trained chef and prolific freelance writer. In previous careers, he sold insurance and mutual funds, and was a longtime retailer. He was educated at Memorial University of Newfoundland and the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology. His articles have appeared on numerous home and garden sites including GoneOutdoors, TheNest and eHow.