Authors: Family Fresh Cooking With Marla
How much do you know about BeautifulIdaho? Did you know that they supply the USA with 1/3 of it’s potatoes? Did you know that these people love their land and are some of the best folks I have ever met?
Recently I was on a Idaho Potato Harvest Tour sponsored by the Idaho Potato Commission. We all met up in Idaho Falls for an amazing 3 day adventure.
This trip changed a girl who was OK with potatoes to a gal obsessed with everything potato! Let’s take a look….
I love the country and farms. As a matter of fact I have a few Pinterest boards dedicated to this. Any opportunity I can visit a farm thrills me.
See, don’t I look happy on the farm?! (Thanks Rachael for snapping this photo)
I begged the whole trip to have the opportunity to take photos of old barns.
My wish was delivered…one of the most beautiful old barns I have ever seen!
I never knew this state was so gorgeous. (I kinda thought ~ but needed to confirm with a visit)
From sweeping fields with bluebird skies to the Grand Teton mountain range and silvery Snake River. Stunning! All of it.
I can proudly wear my cowboy boots in Idaho…it’s that kind of place.
My favorite new Lucchese’s.
Not only did we see potatoes but we saw some corn too. Talk about a social ice breaker?
Next time you throw an event have the introductions take place in a corn maze ~ a fantastic way to hone survival skills and trust in others!
Thank goodness for fearless leaders. Patti made sure we all made it outta there without getting freaked out and lost.
Corn, onions and potatoes are all crops found in glorious Idaho.
Generations of Farmers
Idaho farmers love what they do and they subsist on the family business generation after generation.
We enjoyed dinner hosted by the lovely Hoff family on their farm appropriately named the Rainbow Ranch. They treated us to amazing food and showed us around their beautiful potato farm. Not only do they farm, but they have an airplane, car and motorcycle collection that had us all swooning!
We also met generations of packers, processors and great people from the Idaho Potato Commission.
The potato business is big and booming in Idaho and people take it seriously.
Famous Potato License Plates
They take potatoes so seriously in Idaho that the state license plate has a baked potato with a slab of butter on it. You can take or leave that graphic option, you go with simply “Famous Potatoes”
Neat huh! I love how well they have branded potatoes.
My guy readers will love this…
How cute is this gal? She drives that big potato truck! She was very patient as we all took bunches of photos.
While Nikelle worked we clicked away. All of the people we met on our tour were so kind and fun to be around.
They love where they live and what they do for a living. They grow, ship, process and care for potatoes like you would not believe!
What would a harvest tour be without harvesting and tasting tons of Famous Potatoes?! I started off this trip thinking potatoes were just OK ~ I cook them all the time because my hubs and kids love spuds. Well, let’s say that now they have become a staple on my favorites list too!
On this tour I enjoyed potatoes in sweets, savories and everything in between. Some of my favorite dishes were gnocchi, potato gratin and a potato egg breakfast casserole.
I left Idaho amazed at how many recipes can be developed using potatoes. I love that you can pull them from the earth and have a healthy meal in no time at all. From farm to fork ~ that is the Famous Idaho Potato.
Jim Tiede showed us around the harvest fields and how to dig up potatoes…
We went to storage, shipping and packaging facilities too.
I was obsessed with the old bits of machinery. My pal RJ was wondering what my obsession was all about. He was filling me in on what these gizmos are for.
I guess they are older machinery parts that can be used if something breaks down. Is that right RJ?!
A lot of folks enjoy the convenience of quick cooking potato flakes. The fabulous folks at Idahoan took us on a tour of their processing plant. I love that they have an all-natural Honest Earth potatoes seasoned simply with butter and salt. Perfect for those nights when you have nothing prepared at home or you just need a quick nourishing and comforting meal.
The one thing I love most about potatoes is how they can be used for healthy breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks. They are perfect for the lunchbox too!
Stay tuned for a GREAT recipe I just developed & photographed for you.
In the mean time here are a few recipes from Family Fresh Cooking to try right now…
Energy Packed Whole Food
I love that potatoes give you lots of go juice!
This energy packed tuber has loads of vitamins, minerals and nutrients. Wikipedia says this: Humans can actually survive healthily on a diet of potatoes supplemented only with milk or butter, which contain the two vitamins not provided by potatoes (vitamins A and D) That is one hot potato!
Potatoes are a very affordable & nutritious way to feed your family. Prepared with minimal effort you can have a healthy, tasty meal on the table and plenty of leftovers if you make enough.
The other thing I like is that potatoes last a good amount of time when you store them at room temperature ~ a great grab and go food.
Pop ‘em in the oven or microwave to cook while you run around the house doing all the things that need to get done.
Grand Teton Mountains
The last night of our trip we were indulged with a stay at the Teton Springs Lodge in Victor, Idaho.
This resort is well appointed and beautiful! What’s not to love when you are greeted with mountains and a rainbow? It also has one of the world’s best golf courses.
I was wowed by the rooms, pool and the spa.
I did not have enough time for a spa treatment, but it is high on my priority list to have one at the lodge.This is a place I would love to take my family to someday. Only 40 minutes away is the famous ski resort Jackson Hole in Wyoming. I will be returning to this area for certain!
We had a stunning twilight horseback ride at the Linn Canyon Ranch in Teton Valley.
I will never forget the golden glow that night.
The sun was setting and reflecting off the golden fall leaves. I am so happy I was able to share this experience with my friends.
We all giggled, laughed, smiled and were a bright eyed bunch the entire ride.
Horseback was followed by an unforgettable gourmet dinner at the ranch.
That’s all for now folks. Stay tuned for delicious potato recipes I will be posting soon. I can’t wait to share my new favorite whole food with you.
Thank you very much to the Idaho Potato Commission for such a well planned and inspirational trip.
Hope yo see you again soon BeautifulIdaho!
Our Fabulous Group
I had a lot of friends on this trip and met a bunch of new ones.
Greg from Sippity Sup can see as far as the eye can see ~ with potato glasses! See that pretty lady digging up potatoes? I am so happy I had the opportunity to meet Jessica, The Novice Chef. She is hilarious and is at the ready to teach me helpful beauty tricks and tips.
Bloggers on this trip…
- Dorothy Reinhold, Shockingly Delicious
- Greg Henry, Sippity Sup
- Jessica Reddick, My Baking Heart
- Jessica Segarra, The Novice Chef
- Julie Deily, The Little Kitchen
- Marla Meridith, Family Fresh Cooking
- Meagan Micozzi, Scarletta Bakes
- Nicole Presley, Presley’s Pantry
- Patti Londre, Worth the Whisk
- Rachael Hutchings, La Fuji Mama
- Sara O’Donnell, Average Betty
Disclosure: It is my pleasure to be working with the Idaho Potato Commission to help spread the word about delicious Idaho® potatoes.