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Potato! - Safety

The potato is part of the nightshade family of plants and like its relative the tomato does have some disagreeable qualities. One should never eat anything green from a potato. The leaves and stem are poisonous. Ingestion, especially in significant quantities, may require hospitalization.

Potatoes should be stored in dark, but dry places. Light will cause the formation of solanine on the skin of the potato. Though not likely to cause serious harm, green skinned potatoes can taste bitter and may result in temporary digestive discomfort.

When confronted by green skin on a potato, simply peel it away as well as any green pulp that may have formed underneath. Keep as much of the rest of the skin as possible. The skin is where most of the vitamins reside. Yet the skins should be thoroughly washed to move any chemicals that have been sprayed on them. This is often done to prevent sprouting. Sprouts lessen the shelf life of potatoes by sucking out the nutrients in the potatoes.

Potatoes are one of the most nutritious staple crops discovered by man. With milk in the diet, it can be a sustaining and healthful source of energy, vitamins, and minerals both in times of want and in times of plenty.

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For a great history read "The Potato: How the Humble Spud Rescued the Western World", by Larry Zuckerman. Visit Amazon.com for details:

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Index | History | Cultivation | Safety | Daily Allowances | Recipes
Potato Wine | Potato Varieties

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