POTATOES From purple gnocchi to the perfect mash, the humble spud comes in sizes and colours as varied as the dishes they star in, writes Annabel Ross.

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GEORGINA Dragwidge stocks about 20 varieties of potatoes at her South Melbourne Market stall, but she also has sweet potatoes, pumpkins, garlic, chillies, onions and root vegetables.

The King Edward ($3.99 a kilogram) is her pick for roasting. “Someone like Heston Blumenthal will tell you that it’s got the right water content for roasting,” Dragwidge says. “It comes out really nice and floury.”

Pale white to yellow in colour and tinged with pink “kisses”, the King Edward can be used for a variety of dishes, but is not recommended for salads. Dragwidge suggests parboiling and roasting King Edwards with olive oil for perfect roast spuds.

Georgie’s Harvest Potatoes and Herbs, Stall 50, South Melbourne Market, 322-326 Coventry Street, 9696 2288, Wed, Sat & Sun 8am-4pm, Fri 8am-5pm.


FOR an unbeatable mash, you can’t go past the Blue Zarr, Georgina Dragwidge says. “You don’t need to add a lot to it, it’s a stand-alone mash.”

With dark-purple skin and pale flesh, Blue Zarrs ($3.99/kg at Georgie’s Harvest) are neither floury nor waxy. Boil them with skins on, peel and mash, or put them through a ricer. A splash of milk and/or butter is an optional extra. “People come time and again from far and wide for these potatoes,” Dragwidge says.

“They say we’ve destroyed their mash because now they can only make it with Blue Zarrs.” She recommends keeping potatoes in a dark, dry place and buying dirty where possible. “The dirt acts like a sunscreen; potatoes don’t like the light.”

Georgie’s Harvest, South Melbourne Market, 322-326 Coventry Street, 9696 2288, Wed, Sat & Sun 8am-4pm, Fri 8am-5pm