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Old 14.12.2008, 02:30
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Rösti in the States: choice of potatoes

I am planning a "Swiss meal" in a few weeks, and will probably be making multiple posts seeking advice!

I definitely know that I want rösti to be part of that meal. Does anyone know what variety of American potatoes would be best? More to the point, how much does it matter?

Anyone care to comment on using raw versus boiled potatoes?

Any other advice?
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Old 14.12.2008, 07:49
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Re: Rösti in the States: choice of potatoes

Potato variety matters a great deal in making a rösti - if the potato is too starchy/mealy it will become too soft and end up being a bit mushy; if the potato is too waxy it will have too much moisture and may not fry properly. Everyone has a different idea of what a rösti should taste like. For me, the ideal rösti has a crispy exterior and soft interior...it is best made with a potato that will not fall apart when cooked, yet have enough starch to properly brown and crust up in the pan. In Switzerland, there is actually a class for rösti potatoes, which are mostly on the waxy side. In the US, these classes don't exist so your challenge is to find the right one.

Baking potatoes are considered starchy/mealy. When cooked, their cell walls will break and the starch will expand, thereby creating a fluffy texture. They are quite dense. Boiling potatoes are considered waxy types. They have stronger cell walls, which do not break apart when cooked, thus enabling the potato to keep its shape. They are not as dense as the baking potato. One test you can make if you are not sure is to put the potato in salted water (100 gr. salt to one liter). If the potato floats it is a boiling potato, if it sinks then it is best for baking. A rösti potato will float about in the middle of the water.

As for cooking vs. raw potatoes...Everyone in Switzerland has an opinion on this subject...Many swear by the raw method, while others think it is a good idea to cook the potatoes ahead of time. I think if you are using a baking potato, then start raw. If you are using a boiling potato, then consider cooking ahead of time. I always take the middle ground (quite Swiss of me) and partially cook the potatoes (with skin on), cool them, then peel, grate, season and cook.

Having explained all of that, I would recommend using Yukon golds or yellow finns in the US...they have enough starch in them for browning and enough firmness to hold their shape.

You can also find out more about potatoes in our blog.

Good luck with the rösti
Jack
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Old 14.12.2008, 11:00
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Re: Rösti in the States: choice of potatoes

I know it is cheating, but we have found packaged rosti in stores throughout the US (CA and ME).

fduvall
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Old 14.12.2008, 12:03
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Re: Rösti in the States: choice of potatoes

Who would believe that the humble potato could be that technical? (Other than Jack, of course)
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Old 14.12.2008, 12:15
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Re: Rösti in the States: choice of potatoes

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I know it is cheating, but we have found packaged rosti in stores throughout the US (CA and ME).
Was it actually called "Rösti"..? Me thinks Hash Browns.
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Old 14.12.2008, 12:31
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Re: Rösti in the States: choice of potatoes

It was definitely Rösti. Do not remember the brand...As I grew up in CA eating and making hash browns, I certainly know the difference.

In Maine, we bought it at a Christmas store in Augusta. In CA, it was in Marin at a specialty foods store...or maybe Trader Joe's.

fduvall

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Was it actually called "Rösti"..? Me thinks Hash Browns.
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Old 14.12.2008, 13:53
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Re: Rösti in the States: choice of potatoes

best Hash Browns I had in the USA is in North Dakota and yes it comes ready cooked (in canada)
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Old 14.12.2008, 14:04
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Re: Rösti in the States: choice of potatoes

and with roeschti there must be "brath wurscht " So I need a recepie for it how the farmers make it I have a "Kitchen aid "mixing stand "
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Old 14.12.2008, 14:05
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Re: Rösti in the States: choice of potatoes

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It was definitely Rösti. Do not remember the brand...As I grew up in CA eating and making hash browns, I certainly know the difference.

In Maine, we bought it at a Christmas store in Augusta. In CA, it was in Marin at a specialty foods store...or maybe Trader Joe's.
A quick googling indicates that people have seen it at World Market stores, and that it can be ordered on-line from www.theswissbakery.com; see:

http://www.theswissbakeryonline.com/...od-Pantry.html
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Old 14.12.2008, 14:18
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Re: Rösti in the States: choice of potatoes

Moore :I make mine with butter and mix in some bacon fat for taste my wife cals it a colesterol nigtmare
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Old 14.12.2008, 14:26
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Re: Rösti in the States: choice of potatoes

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A quick googling indicates ...
Was there life on this planet before
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Old 14.12.2008, 20:45
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Re: Rösti in the States: choice of potatoes

I've tried to make rösti in North America a few times, and have two pieces of advice:

1. Plan at least one trial run. My first try ended up being essentially one large sticky, gooey lump of potatoes that I would have been completely embarrassed to serve to guests: 8/10 for flavour and 2/10 for presentation. My second attempt was much better. I don't remember the variety of potato I used, but it was on the waxy side. I partially cooked them and let them cool completely (left them in the fridge overnight), then I peeled and shredded them.
2. As unhealthy as it is, don't skimp on the fat! It helps keep the individual pieces of shredded potato from sticking together, and makes the surfaces that touch the pan pleasantly brown and crispy. Remember, it's not supposed to be good for you!

Bon app!

Heather
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Old 14.12.2008, 20:50
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Re: Rösti in the States: choice of potatoes

Thanks, Heather.

The trial run is a no-brainer; I am planning on a rösti for one tonight. But the second point was very valuable; I try to limit the fat in my cooking ... clearly this is not where to do so.
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Old 14.12.2008, 23:41
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Re: Rösti in the States: choice of potatoes

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and with roeschti there must be "brath wurscht " So I need a recepie for it how the farmers make it I have a "Kitchen aid "mixing stand "
http://www.google.com/search?client=...UTF-8&oe=UTF-8
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Old 15.12.2008, 00:04
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Re: Rösti in the States: choice of potatoes

Crazy as I am I once made a roshti In Australia in 40% heat. I did it in the par-boil mode. Don't ask me what it was but when I grated the spuds they turned bright pink!
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Old 15.12.2008, 00:17
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Re: Rösti in the States: choice of potatoes

I was in Italy for six months and made rösti for some friends. You should ask in your store, which potatoes you should buy for potatoe salad. They should be the right ones. I recomend to frying the potatoes raw, I think they are crispier like that. But you have to grate the potaoes and then fry them immediately, if not they turn in to a funny colour.

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I am planning a "Swiss meal" in a few weeks, and will probably be making multiple posts seeking advice!

I definitely know that I want rösti to be part of that meal. Does anyone know what variety of American potatoes would be best? More to the point, how much does it matter?

Anyone care to comment on using raw versus boiled potatoes?

Any other advice?
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Old 15.12.2008, 02:55
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Success!!!!

24 hours ago I started this thread before going to bed (New England time). I woke up and found Jack's helpful reply (I had hoped that the author of the potato book would reply ), and looking in my veggie bin found some Yukon Gold potatoes. I followed his advice and half boiled them in the morning.

Later I read Heather's post, and decided I would not skimp on the fat! In the meantime read lots of rösti recipes, both in English and in French.

This evening I grated the potatoes, melted the butter (lots of it, my cardiologist will complain ) and made the rösti. 25 minutes and the cake was well browned on both sides!!!!

A bit of a problem when entertaining, though. It seems that I need to be in the kitchen essentially all the time while making the rösti, rather than socializing with my guests. I suppose that with practice it will be possible to "multitask" between my guests and the rösti
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Old 15.12.2008, 07:18
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Re: Rösti in the States: choice of potatoes

Make the rösti several hours in advance. Keep at room temperature - do not refrigerate. When ready to serve...place some butter (more fat!) in the hot pan...crisp one side, then warm in a 200 degree C oven for about 8 minutes...good as new, but you can only do this one time... Enjoy!
Jack
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Old 15.12.2008, 10:45
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Re: Rösti in the States: choice of potatoes

Packaged Rosti can be found in any of the World Market Stores along with lots of other goodies from Switzerland and other countries.
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Old 15.12.2008, 10:54
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Re: Rösti in the States: choice of potatoes

I go to Halifax at christmas ,can I trop in for roeschti
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