GUEST BLOGGER: MELANIE JEWKES
I often think that maybe, just maybe, the “manna” in Moses’ time was really potatoes. At least I hope it was something like a potato, because if I had to choose just one food to eat every day for 40 years the ingenuity of a potato is wonderful. There are so many ways to cook and prepare potatoes that I hardly grow tired of them. In addition to the thousand and one ways to eat potatoes, I also love them because they are healthy budget-stretchers. Wait! Did I just say a potato is healthy? I know, I know...those poor little tubers have a bad reputation, but most of the time we can blame that on the butter, salt and sour cream commonly associated with potatoes.
Potatoes are excellent sources of fiber, vitamin C and vitamin B6. In addition, potatoes are great sources of potassium--even more than bananas. Fiber is something most Americans need more of in their diets and getting the right amounts of potassium can help reduce the risk of hypertension and stroke. Potatoes really can be a healthy part of our meal plans.
And the best news of all is potatoes are half the cost of other vegetables (and sometimes even less)! It’s not uncommon to be able to buy a 10-pound bag of russet potatoes for $3 or less (right now at one store 10 lbs. is on sale for $1.49). Estimating about 2-3 potatoes per pound, that 10-pound bag will cost about $0.04 - $0.07 each potato. Amazing!
Potatoes can also be purchased individually. Loose potatoes can be more expensive than a 10-pound bag, but still very reasonable for a serving of vegetables. I have noticed that these potatoes tend to be much larger, in most instances. For example, at one store a single Russet potato will cost about $0.99 per pound (roughly $0.61 each).
Another budget-stretching benefit of the potato is they generally are shelf stable for longer than many other fresh vegetables, particularly if you can keep them in a dry, dark and cool storage. This will help preserve the vitamins and minerals and keep them from rotting sooner.
If there is ever a time when you run out of money before the end of the month, potatoes could save the day! Here are some of my favorite, simple ways to make and eat potatoes.
Happy grocery saving!
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