I have served impolite potatoes for decades.
The Potato: A compilation of Information from every available source (1912) advises that “In polite society, potatoes are only admitted “en robe de chambre”, - that is to say, in their jackets – to the meal and then not on formal occasions. At such time the following are used …. ”
The book goes on to give a number of extraordinarily polite potato recipes, starting with this one:
Special recipe of M. Joseph, chef of the Cafe Paillard:
Take a potato and hollow it out, filling the hollow with a salpicon of shrimp tails drenched in a bisque sauce made from the heads and pounded bodies of the shrimps. Cover the potato with some of the mashed insides and bake very well done and serve hot.
Somewhat later in the polite section is a familiar recipe:
Potatoes Julienne (Shoestring Potatoes)
Cut raw into very fine shreds like straws, cook quickly in hot lard, dust with fine salt.
Followed by a very unfamiliar (to me) and most intriguingly named dish:
Between the Acts Potatoes.
Same as Julienne, only about twice as large.
The name? Does this mean French Fries during the interval at the theatre?
From another book about The Irish Potato (1914) by Jessie Pinning Rich, from the University of Texas in 1914 we have a rather more homely approach – a recipe which sounds like a great way to use up leftover potatoes - but whatever you do, don’t serve them to guests if you move in polite society, it sounds a little rustic and, well, leftover.
Cut cold boiled potatoes into cubes and mix one cup of potatoes and one-half cup of cream sauce, having previously added four tablespoons of grated cheese. Pour over potatoes and heat slowly without boiling.
Tomorrow’s Story …
Poorhouse or Prison?
Quotation for the Day …
Pray for peace and grace and spiritual food. For wisdom and guidance, for all these are good. But don’t forget the potatoes. John Tyler Petee.