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I'm thinking a lot of city boys are going to go hungry. It's not that there's going to be a shortage of food, but how to preserve it so you don't go through feast an famine, imho. As Elwood Blues sang, they'll be eating a wish sandwich. Raised on a farm, worked on farms for part of my life, if we are talking about shtf, end of our coddled lives, hoo boy, there's going to be some major adjustments. It's to bad the woodpile report wasn't saved for posterity, ol'Remus had a lot of good stuff on there. He was definitely a ol'country boy. Maybe listen to Hank Williams Jr. country boy will survive, and maybe Steve Earle copper road. Just to get in the mood. Lol.
 
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Potato plants are usually two to four feet high depending on variety. The spuds form on shoots that are above where the spuds or chunks of spud are planted. So tubers are usually planted in trenches and are hilled up as the plants grow.

Most potatoes should NOT be fed raw to humans, pigs, poultry, or other monogastric animals. There are a few special varieties, none available commercially, that supposedly can be eaten raw by us monogastrics. I've tried two or three such varieties and they tasted awful and are not anything I would eat raw. Not making you sick and actually being digestible are not the same thing. Cattle and sheep and probably all other ruminants can eat raw potatoes. However, they should not be fed green potatoes or improperly stored potatoe or rotten potatoes. These can have high levels of poisonous glycoalkaloids. The glycoalkaloids taste bitter and are harsh on the throat. So you are unlikely to poison yourself or your animals unless the potatoes are mixed into food and diluted so the animals are forced to eat them or starve.

Potatoes get criticized because their starch is digested very easily directly into glucose, the sugar our body is designed to run on. That is, potatoes have a very high Glycemic index, which is a rating of how fast your blood sugar rises after eating the food. Or would if you eat a big meal of potatoes by themselves with no other food and no butter or gravy or oil from frying. But who ever eats potatoes that way? If you eat your mashed potatoes with butter like God intended, the glycemic index is very much tempered. And even more so if the buttery potato accompanies a nice steak. And you are not required to eat a huge plain potato for breakfast, when people who have trouble regulating their blood sugar have the most problems. You can eat a smaller helping in the morning. Or eat your potatoes later in the day. Or make your breakfast spuds hash browns fried in duck fat accompanied by a couple of scrambled duck eggs.

If you grow potatoes you're likely to have culls that can be animal feed. For ruminants we're advised to introduce the potatoes to the diet gradually. When I had a duck flock I fed them large amounts of cooked potatoes. They love cooked potatoes. The simplest way to feed cooked potatoes to poultry is to give the birds a smorgasbord where different foods are in different buckets. In winter my birds would get a bucket of cooked potatoes, A bucket of whole corn, A bucket of chicken unmedicated broiler feed with no fish meal, and two smaller pails of grits -- one oyster shell and the other granite grit. The birds foraged actively, and whenever the ground wasnt frozen or covered with snow, also got lots of earthworms, slugs, snails, and greens. The female ducks were laying ducks, so needed oyster shell grit for their gizzard stones and for extra calcium. The male birds needed the grit without the extra calcium. I used chicken feed instead of duck feed because its way cheaper and less likely to be stale. The broiler chow is high protein. The corn is high carb. The ducks vary how much they eat of the two basic foods depending on the temperature and their forage. Ducks in maritime nw with good forage can scrounge nearly all their protein but not all their carbs. On very cold days they eat more corn. If theres snow and they get no earthworms or slugs they eat more high protein chow. The broiler chow must be unmediated because ducks don't need the meds, and can be killed by them. And the chow should not contain fish meal because duck eggs seem more susceptible to picking up off fishy flavors than chicken eggs. I don't use layer chow because the calcium is right for laying chickens, not for male birds or growing duckings. (Actually the calcium content is actually right only for confined chickens eating only the commercial chiw. If they are free ranging they eat a diet thats only partially commercial chow. So youll get soft shelled eggs unless you give the laying hens oyster shell grit anyway.) The biggest difference in nutritional needs of ducks and chickens is ducks need much more niacin. However, there is plenty of niacin in the greens free range ducks eat. And we add niacin to the drinking water of ducklings.

To add potatoes to the duck diet I fill a canning kettle with spuds, add water and some salt, cover with an upside down steaming rack with a weight on top to hold the spuds under water, and bring water to a boil and cook till done. I remove some for my own dinner and breakfast. When feeding ducks unfamiliar with potatoes I mash the top layer in their bucket a bit. Once they learn they won't need the help. When given all the cooked spuds they want, my ducks would eat only a few bites of their expensive high protein chow and little or no corn. by comparison, when given cooked winter squash the birds would eat no corn but ordinary amounts of broiler chow. So the squash provides plenty of carbs but little protein. The potatoes provide good amounts of both.

Always give ducks any new food in a separate container in addition to their ordinary foods. Ducks will usually try only a little of a new food the first day. I think this is a behavior that helps prevent poisoning. If they like the food and it doesn't make them sick they will eat more tomorrow. If you mix the spuds with their ordinary food, they may eat only a bite, and basically go without food almost totally for a day or two.

My duck flock loved cooked potatoes. On a dry weight basis, potatoes have about as much protein as hard wheat. And of course have plenty of carbs and vitamin C. The calories are about the same as an equal weight of apples until you add butter, cheese, etc. Many potato varieties can be grown without irrigation in the maritime NW. Unirrigated potatoes tend to have higher specific gravity and much more intense flavor.
I raise potatoes in raised cages, made of field fence and road mat, get 6 plant per cage, harvest almost 20 lbs per cage
we grow early season, mid, late and Peruvian Purple which last until after first frost
harvested my first Yukon Gold before the 4th
as for the starch, we slice the potato and wash them in cold water before final cooking

get truckloads of aged dairy manure from Swanson's in Longview

grow chard, tomatoes, lots of garlic and onions, potatoes, shallots, squash, zucchini, peppers, beans, peas and cucumber
marionberries, raspberries, blueberries and grapes
started harvesting marionberries yesterday
we don't get rain for 3 months in Clark Co and temps into the hundreds, so irrigation is mandatory
in fact my ability to grow is only limited by the output of my well - only 5 GPM
not to mention the herb garden

20200717_193919.jpg long garden.jpg marionberry.jpg 20210314_181720.jpg 01 ranbow chard.jpg garlic bed.jpg
 
I raise potatoes in raised cages, made of field fence and road mat, get 6 plant per cage, harvest almost 20 lbs per cage
we grow early season, mid, late and Peruvian Purple which last until after first frost
harvested my first Yukon Gold before the 4th
as for the starch, we slice the potato and wash them in cold water before final cooking

get truckloads of aged dairy manure from Swanson's in Longview

grow chard, tomatoes, lots of garlic and onions, potatoes, shallots, squash, zucchini, peppers, beans, peas and cucumber
marionberries, raspberries, blueberries and grapes
started harvesting marionberries yesterday
we don't get rain for 3 months in Clark Co and temps into the hundreds, so irrigation is mandatory
in fact my ability to grow is only limited by the output of my well - only 5 GPM
not to mention the herb garden

View attachment 992166 View attachment 992168 View attachment 992169 View attachment 992170 View attachment 992171 View attachment 992172
Looks yummy.
here's some cooking trickS. To make mashed potatoes With Yukon Gold potaties you can just boil in salted water. The YGs will normally break open when boiled. I actually scrub with vegetable brush and cook and coarse mash with skins on, but peeling and fine mashing is also okay. Best mashed potato texture involves adding warm milk or some warm cooking water from pot to the potatoes , not cold fluid. I like to include butter and shredded Tillamook extra sharp cheddar cheese to hot spuds so it melts into mashed potatoes.. Season to taste with freshly ground pepper and a sprinkle of fresh chives or scallions leaves.

So what if you want to make a potato salad with YGs? For that you need the potatoes to hold together firmly like wax potatoes such as Yellow Finns. but YGs don't usually do that. What I do is put the YGs in a steamer basket in a pot, cover spuds, and boil for fifteen minutes or so. Then remove basket with spuds briefly, pour off excess water so water level is below spuds, and return basket of spuds to the pot and steam them until done. This is much faster than cooking just with steaming. And the spuds will hold together nicely so you can make great potato salad with them. I always cook plenty and refrigerate the extras for eating out of hand. A firm cooked YG with a chunk of cheese makes a great breakfast or lunch. Add a generous glass of a good Oregon Pinot Gris and it is a gourmet lunch. Use a large wine glass for the wine. It really affects flavor. Glass is designed to deliver concentrated aromas to nose. As a first approximation I serve pinot gris at room temperature. If the flavor isn't quite acidic enough, chill it slightly. Chilling increases acid flavor but reduces overall intensity of flavor.

White flesh and yellow flesh potatoes go well with any meat. Blue or red flesh potatoes taste so different they are an entirely different vegetable. They have strong flavors and lingering after tastes. They don't go well with poultry, as they overwhelm and clash with it. They also don't go well with white or yellow flesh potatoes or hard cooked eggs or mayonnaise. They go great with beef. And liver. And onions, garlic, and tamari or soy sauce. Stir fried Liver, onions, and blue potatoes seasoned with pepper and tamari sauce is really great. Forgetabout a forth of July red, white and blue potato salad. It will taste far better with out the red flesh and blue fleshed spuds. Put a chuck roast on a rack in a roasting pan. Pile chunks of blue flesh potatoes and onions around Edges and over top of meat. Cover and roast until meatbis tender. add pepper and tamari sauce to the richly flavored drippings and mix with the drippings with onions and spuds. Slather meat with the drippings, spuds, and onions. serve with a red wine that has some astringency such as a South Oregon or California Cabernet Sauvignon.

Good baking potatoes and good boiling potatoes are different varieties. They have different starches in them and bakers have skin s that are delicious when baked. Good bakers make the best fried potatoes too. YGs are good boiling potatoes. for a full repertoire you need both types.

Don't be fooled by so called low carb potato varieties. These are just boiling potatoes, which have more water in them than baking potatoes. On a dry weight basis they aren't low carb. And our bodies are not fooled by water. When presented with watery potatoes we simply eat more than with Baker types.
 

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