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Idaho Potato Harvest

October, 2016 · By Coryanne Ettiene

I’ve been an adopted Idahoan for a few years now, but this autumn I made it official when I traveled to Idaho to participate in the 2016 Idaho Potato Harvest.  Over the last 4 years I have worked with the IPC creating recipes, video content and building communities online; every collaboration has been better than the next, and this harvest is a testament to that. I grew up in the ag world, surrounded by 4H and FFA friends who rode tractors on the weekends,  while I cycled to school on the very fields they tended.  Farming was never in my blood, and quite frankly was nothing I appreciated until I became a foodie.

potato-filed-by-kita

Photo Credit: Kita Roberts

(side note:  everyone farms in a pair of Old Gringos and a short dress, right? )

I’ve always told my children of the food story starting with the farmer in the filed, the truck that loads the food, the warehouse worker who holds it and the produce manager the stocks the shelves, but I’ve really never seen the science that goes on behind closed doors. That said, I have been a huge advocate of No Farms No Food, and tried where possible to support my local farmer’s market. But here is a truth that is not often spoken of:  Yes big farms are big business, and yes supporting locally grown produce is a brilliant cause, but if we don’t have big farms, who is going to feed the world?    It was only while standing in the field watching farmers generations deep in the culture of harvesting potatoes that I saw the enormity of what they are doing. And the quantities of people around the globe benefitting from the experience of these farmers.  I was awe struck. The food story I’ve been telling my children missed out on so many key players, and did not touch upon the heritage of these farmers.  I left Idaho with a renewed respect for those who are feeding our society, not just from 50 miles away, but from across the miles.

Photo Credit: Cheryl Bennett‎

Photo Credit: Cheryl Bennett‎

There were so many highlights from this harvest tour, the most impactful was meeting the farmers and the workers who keep these farms operating 24/7.  And then there was the remarkable flight I took over Rainbow Ranch, words fail to describe how amazing it was, you can watch the flight here.

Photo Credit: J. Pollack Photography

Photo Credit: J. Pollack Photography

And with the potato harvest in full swing, there is no better time to dish up a few fabulous potato recipes, here are a few of my favorite from across the years:  Mini Duchess Potatoes , Mashed Potato Stuffing Balls and Gruyere Scalloped Potatoes . From our kitchen to yours, enjoy the food journey and all the flavors it brings.

 

 

Photo Credit:  Cheryl Bennett‎

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