The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

Four easy recipes to make for International Day of Potato

Whether roasted, fried, baked or mashed, the potato is a cornerstone of versatility. What better way to demonstrate this than by cooking a tasty potato for the first International Day of Potato on Thursday? 

The United Nations established May 30 as the International Day of Potato in December 2023 to bring public attention to the environmental, economic and nutritional benefits of starch. 

According to the UN, the total production of potatoes will reach 750 million tons globally by 2030, cementing its role as a staple food around the world.

The National Potato Council reports that potatoes in their natural state are a great source of vitamin C and potassium, as well as being an effective antioxidant, making them a palatable and healthy choice. 

Potato lovers across the globe are encouraged to join the potato frenzy this year by using the hashtag #InternationalDayOfPotato to share their recipes, gardens and potato-related events.

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If International Day of Potato has inspired you to get involved, here are some easy potato recipes from the Food Network that you can try today.

Mashed potatoes are one of the most classic potato dishes. Many families have their secret recipe with a dash of a special herb to spice this basic dish up. While this recipe certainly won’t beat a family classic, it’s basic enough to be built upon and turned into your own. 


Mashed potatoes


4 pounds of potatoes 

3 tablespoons of unsalted butter or butter alternative

Salt and pepper to taste

2 cups of heavy cream or alternative

To begin, rinse and peel the potatoes under cool water. Cut them into 1-inch pieces. 

Fill a pot with cold water and add ½ teaspoon of salt. Add the potatoes and bring to a boil over high heat. It will take about 15 minutes for the potatoes to become fork-tender. Drain the water from the potatoes. Let rest for three to four minutes.

Add in the butter or butter alternative. Mash the potatoes and butter. A potato masher is a preferred tool for this job, but a hand mixer, immersion blender, potato ricer or fork also works. 

Add the remaining salt, pepper and milk and stir. At this point, any other ingredients can also be added to taste. 


Potato salad

Another staple food of the midwest is the “salad” — an amalgamation of starches, vegetables and assorted condiments and a fan-favorite at cookouts and pool parties. Potato salad is one of the most popular dishes in this mayonnaise-based cuisine. This is a quick and easy recipe you can try today. 


3 pounds of potatoes 

1 cup of mayonnaise

¼ cup of buttermilk

2-4 tablespoons of preferred mustard 

½ cup of chopped dill

2 stalks of celery

¼ cup of chopped red onion

Salt and pepper to taste

To begin, rinse and peel potatoes under cool water and cut into ½ inch chunks. Place in a large pot of water and boil for 10-15 minutes or until fork-tender. 

In a separate bowl, mix mayonnaise, buttermilk, mustard, dill, salt and pepper.

Combine the potatoes and dressing. Add in dressing, celery and chopped onions. 

If the potato salad seems dry, try adding milk, water or pickle juice. 


Sweet potato casserole 

An easy twist on traditional savory potato dishes is sweet potatoes. With almost as much recipe variety as their bland counterparts, sweet potatoes are a versatile food that can be used in many creative ways. They can even be transformed into a sweet dessert dish like this sweet potato casserole. 


3 cups of sweet potatoes (cooked or canned)

4 tablespoons of melted butter

½ cup of milk

¼ cup of brown sugar, packed

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

2 beaten eggs

Salt to taste

½ cup of flour

½ cup of brown sugar, packed

½ stick of melted butter

¼ tsp of salt

¾ cup of chopped pecans

To begin, preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Mash the sweet potatoes. Add melted butter, milk, brown sugar, vanilla extract and salt. Beat eggs and add in. Stir ingredients together until completely combined and add into an oven-safe dish. 

In a separate bowl add softened butter, flour, brown sugar and pecan pieces. Use fingers or a fork to combine into a crumb texture. Evenly distribute the mixture over the casserole. 

Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the top is golden. Let stand on the counter for 10 minutes or until mixture is set. 


Potato gnocchi

Finally, for a less obvious potato recipe, gnocchi is a staple that can be used in a variety of ways. It is a popular Italian potato dumpling you can use like pasta in any dish. This recipe makes an easy gnocchi for beginners.


3 large potatoes

1 egg

1 teaspoon of salt

¼ teaspoon of pepper

2 cups of flour

To begin, rinse and peel potatoes under cool water and cut them in half. Fill a pot with cold water and add in salt. Add potatoes to the pot and let cook until fork-tender. 

Drain water and place potatoes in a bowl. Use a fork to mash into crumbs. Transfer to a floured surface and form a pile with the potatoes. Add the salt, pepper and flour. Make a well in the middle and crack the egg. 

Begin to incorporate the flour mixture, potato and egg together. A pastry scraper is preferred for this task, but a fork or spatula also works. When the dough combines, begin kneading with your hands. If the dough is sticky, add small amounts of flour until smooth. 

Split the dough into several small balls. Roll into ½ inch-thick ropes and cut ¾-inch pieces off. For texture, carefully roll the dough pieces against a fork. 

You can now boil the pasta in soup, cook it in sauce or sauté it with your favorite herbs. 

No matter how they are prepared, potatoes are one of the main staple foods in American cuisine. Celebrate your favorite potato dish today on the International Day of Potato.


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