#junkfreejune and Potatoes NZ

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#junkfreejune and Potatoes NZ

Posted by BlogAdmin on June 10th, 2015


Potatoes NZ is a proud supporter of Junk Free June.  Junk Free June is this years campaign to raise money for the Cancer Society of New Zealand. Like many charities the Cancer Society relies on donations to fund much needed cancer research and to support people and their families with cancer.

Cancer is New Zealand’s biggest cause of death and most of us has been affected by this disease in some way.  But did you know that most common cancers could be prevented by eating a nutritious diet, being physically active and maintaining a healthy body weight?

June Free June aims to give people freedom by helping people free themselves from the things that have a negative impact on their health and wellbeing, raise social awareness of what healthy choices are, educate people on how to live a healthy lifestyle, and empower people to make positive choices.

The good news is that during 30 days you can create new lifelong healthy habits that can stretch beyond the month of June.  It will be your new normal and a new way of thinking about health. One of the best things we can all do for our health is to eat more fresh foods, more whole foods, and more plant based meals.

Here are some tasty snack ideas to help you out through June!

Potatoes and Glycaemic Index – what this really means….

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Potatoes and Glycaemic Index – what this really means…. 

Over the last few years potatoes have got a little bit of a bad reputation as being unhealthy.  So you might be thinking how does the humble potato that has been loved and eaten by many generations of kiwis all of a sudden be “bad” for us?

The glycemic index (GI) is a number associated with a particular type of food that indicates the food’s effect on a person’s blood glucose level and potatoes have been reported to have a high GI.  However the GI doesn’t take into account the density of the carbohydrate in the food or the amount eaten.  This is where Glycemic impact comes in.  A recent article in the New Zealand Herald explains how this works below:

“The advantage of this measure is that it behaves like a nutrient – it has gram units and can be expressed as g/100g of food or g/serving of food, just like other nutrients on a food label. Potatoes are in fact an excellent source of low-density energy.  This means that the energy we get from potato comes from carbohydrate (17kJ/g) rather than fat (34kJ/g) and is diluted about eight times with water. They are also a good source of vitamin C, a source of potassium and niacin, and if you keep the skin on a source of dietary fibre.  The glycaemic impact of potato is easy to manage in a healthy diet.  When potato is cooked the starch gelatinises and becomes digestible.  But when you cool cooked potato and let it stand for a while the starch chains partially join up, and this slows down the speed they are digested.  So starch in cold cooked potato is digested at a lower rate than in the hot potato, and correspondingly has a lower glycaemic impact per weight.  In addition, the acid in the vinaigrette you add to your potato salad (lemon juice, lime juice, or vinegar) will slow stomach emptying which means the starch does not reach digestion/absorption sites in the small intestine as quickly and the glycaemic impact is less acute. ”

So remember its not the potato, its what you do with it!

Read the full article from the New Zealand Herald here or try one of our tasty potato salad recipes here.

Fuel February with the 5+ A Day Challenge 2015

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Potatoes NZ Inc. is supporting 5+ A Day Charitable Trust with the 5+ A Day Challenge during February 2015.

Do you know how many serves of fruit and vegetables you should be aiming to eat a day?

We should be eating at least five servings of fruit and vegetables every day.  This means at least 2 servings of fruit and 3 servings of vegetables (the amount which fits into the palm of your hand is a handy measure for fruit, e.g. 2 apricots for an adult, 1 for a small child or 1 medium potato or 1/2 cup mashed potato).  But the truth is only 59.3% of males and 72.2% of females are meeting 3 serves of vegetables a day.*

Its important we meet these recommendations as fruit and vegetables (including potatoes) give us a range of vitamins, minerals (think folate, vitamins A, C, potassium and phytochemicals) and fibre.  As most fruit and vegetables (yes potatoes too!) are low in energy and are filling they may also help us in maintaining a healthy weight!

*  NZ Health Survey 2011-2013


The 5+ A Day Challenge – February 2015

When: 1-28 February 2015.
What: Add an extra serving of fruit and vegetables to your day.
Why: To feel great and win fabulous prizes.
About: Visit www.5aday.co.nz for inspiration and details on how to enter the 5+ A Day Challenge.
Enter: Like Fredge on facebook.com/5adayNZ and join the 5+ A Day Challenge via the Challenge app. You can also access exclusive competitions, fresh recipes and giveaways.

Make sure you check out our great potatoes recipes and some fun ways to include more potatoes into your diet!

Christmas recipes!

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Christmas Recipes! 


Have you ever thought of adding potato to your baking?  Yes you heard that correctly, potatoes can be a great addition to not just your cooking but also baking.  With Christmas on its way, below are three great recipes that could be a healthier addition to your day.

Gluten Free Nut and Seed Slice

  • 200g mashed potato, cold
  • 3 eggs
  • 200g chocolate chips
  • 70g chopped cashew nuts
  • 70g slithered almonds
  • 70g pumpkin seeds
  • 2 cups desiccated coconut
  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Spray a 20 cm square tin with oil and line the bottom with cooking paper.
  3. Beat the mashed potato and eggs together in a bowl until creamy. Then stir in chocolate chips, nuts, almonds, pumpkin seeds and coconut.
  4. Press into prepared tin and bake in preheated oven for about 30 minutes, until just starting to turn golden.
  5. Cut into squares with a sharp knife and then leave in the tin until cold.

For a crisper slice, bake mixture, as prepared as above, in a sponge roll tin.

Lemon Cake

  • 200 mls canola oil
  • 200g caster sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 175g ground almonds
  • 250g mashing potatoes, cooked, mashed and cooled
  • zest 3 lemons
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  1. Heat oven to 180°C.
  2. Spray a 20 cm round cake tin with oil and line the bottom with baking paper.
  3. Beat oil and sugar until light, then gradually add the eggs, beating after each addition.
  4. Fold in the almonds, cold mashed potato, lemon zest and baking powder.
  5. Pour into the tin and level the top. Bake in preheated oven for 40-45 minutes or until golden, and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  6. Cool for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack.
  7. Cool completely before slicing.


Drizzle the warm cake with a lemon glaze.

  • 4 Tbsp white sugar
  • juice 1 lemon

Heat sugar and lemon juice together, then spoon over the top of the cake, letting it drip down the sides.

Sticky date slice

  • 300g dates, pitted and chopped
  • 1½ tsp gluten free baking soda
  • 1 cup water
  • 100 mls canola oil
  • 1 cup soft brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tsp orange zest
  • 2 cups mashed potatoes
  • 70g walnuts
  • 70g pumpkin seeds, optional
  1. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  2. Spray a sponge roll tin with oil and line the bottom with paper.
  3. Place the dates in a saucepan, add baking soda and water, and heat until boiling. Lower heat and cook until soft and mushy.
  4. Mix the oil and sugar together and beat until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time and beat after each addition.
  5. Stir in orange zest, mashed potato, walnuts, and pumpkin seeds if using and mix well.
  6. Pour into prepared tin and bake in preheated oven for 30 -35 minutes or until firm to the touch.
  7. Cool in the tin then slice.

Serve as a dessert with a caramel sauce.


Merry Christmas!

It’s new potato season!!!!

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It’s new potato season!!!!


Many people have fond memories of new potatoes…. it may be having new potatoes for  Christmas day lunch or even digging up your own homegrown new potatoes!  But for everyone in New Zealand new potatoes signal the start of warmer weather.

A “new” potato is ‘ a young potato pulled out of the ground before it gets to full size.  New potatoes are also known for holding their shape well once cooked and cut.

Like all varities of potatoes, new pototaes are nutrient rich and they even contain over 10 percent of the recommended dietary intake of several B vitamins and also contain potassium. Potassium is an essential mineral that supports healthy muscle function. It is also needed for normal functioning of the nervous system and contributes to healthy growth and development in children.

A healthy body requires a daily source of vitamin C and potatoes provide 40 percent of the recommended dietary intake. This vitamin contributes to a healthy immune system, helps fight fatigue and is an antioxidant that may protect against some lifestyle diseases. The dietary fibre content of potatoes, particularly in the skin, is important to aid healthy digestion. However new potatoes have a softer skin than other varieties and it can easily be flicked off with your fingers.

New potatoes don’t need to be peeled; simply rinse to remove any dirt and cook whole. Store new potatoes in a cool, dark and well-ventilated place. They should be used within a few days of purchase.

Potatoes roasted in duck fat

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Potatoes Roasted in Duck Fat 


Serves 4:


  • 1 Kg roasting potatoes
  • 1/4 cup Duck fat
  • Freshly ground salt


  1. Preheat the oven to 220°C
  2. Peel and wash potatoes, slice into even sized portions
  3. Place in a pot, cover with water and bring to the boil. Drain potatoes.
  4. Place the potatoes in a roasting pan, spoon over the duck fat and roll to cover.
  5. Place in preheated oven and cook for about 45 minutes or until potatoes are golden and crisp.
  6. Sprinkle with salt and serve.

Serving suggestions: Serve hot with your favourite roast – lamb, chicken, duck, turkey, beef or pork or  as tapas with a dipping sauce.

Variations:  Add fresh rosemary and thyme sprigs, or  peeled garlic cloves at the beginning of roasting.

Tip:  Always buy the potato for its end use: floury varieties for baking, mashing and roasting. Waxy varieties for boiling, salads and adding to stews or braises.


Where would NZ be without quality sausages to go with their homemade potato mash

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Where would NZ be without quality sausages to go with their homemade potato mash 


quality sausages

The annual Devro New Zeland Sausage competition took place in Auckland last week, with Allenton Meat Centre of Ashburton (an amazing potato growing area) being crowned the supreme winner.

Traditionally sausage making was  used as a food preservation technique, and with nearly every country worldwide having their own ethnic sausage its not surprisingly the different flavor combinations that we are seeing these days!  This year the sausage of the day was beef and blue cheese. Butcher Paddy Kennedy of Allenton Meat Centre was tight lipped about his technique used to evenly spread the cheese through the sausage meat, but was prepared to disclose that he uses local dairy Talbot Forest’s Pure Forest Blue.

So with sausage season aka BBQ season fast approaching have a look here for some great potato salad recipes.