HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >

Discussion

Why don't you cut up potatoes before boiling?

Hello,

I have a bit of a silly question, but I was wondering if anyone knew the real reason why they recommend keeping potatoes whole when you boil them. For instance, when you're making mashed potatoes. I always thought it was because it makes the potatoes watery, but is it more a taste issue?

Thanks!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
  1. Who are these "they" who are doing the recommending?

    1 Reply
    1. re: Non Cognomina

      haha. Right. I guess 'they' are the hosts of the various cooking shows I've seen.

    2. I guess cause its easier for the potatos to disentegrate into the water and then retain water. Or maybe it has something to do with starch.

      either way, I cut up my potatos in equal sized pieces, throw them in cold water, and then bring the water to a boil. It works fine

      1. Nutrients and flavour leach out of the spuds when they're boiled. It's worse when they're peeled before boiling and worse still when they're cut up, since more surface area is exposed to the water. It also tends to make the potatoes more water-logged.

        1. I always peel and cut up potatoes prior to boiling for mashed. I was surprised to see my father's wife leave them whole for mashed. OTOH I always leave them whole and unpeeled for pot. salad. I never use anything but russetts

          1 Reply
          1. re: Candy

            Leaving the peel on makes for more flavorful potatoes.

          2. I nuke the potatoes, then peel and mash. Nice and dry and fluffy.