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Sweet Purple Potatoes

Anyone know where to buy Sweet Purple Potatoes? Not to be confused with the Peruvian Purple Potatoes that you can find at the Farmer's Market. Apparently these elusive potatoes are delicious and sweeter than the yellow sweet potatoes.

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  1. Eataly

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    Eataly
    200 5th Ave, New York, NY 10010

    1 Reply
    1. re: AubWah

      Wow, that was super fast! Thank you.... will check it out tonight.

    2. Many Japanese/Asian markets have them, as they are also termed "Japanese Sweet Potatoes." THey can be found at the Columbus Circle Whole Foods or Westerley Market/

      1. I just posted a few weeks ago asking the same question because I was getting them in Chinatown last month, but wanted to see where I could get them now. Good to know. They're amazing! They're also called Hawaiian purple yams or Japanese Yams (but not the white ones with the dark skin, although those are really good too).

        1. I've never seen Peruvian potatoes at the farmer's market, but there is a vendor at Union Square on Mondays who sells the deep-red-skinned Asian-style sweet potato and a couple of other varieties. He told me a few weeks ago that he would be there through the winter. I've not been back since on a MOnday so am not sure if he is still at his post.

          9 Replies
          1. re: erica

            Were the red-skinned ones also blackened in places on the outside? Could they be the ones I was looking for in this thread: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7499... ?

            1. re: FoodDabbler

              I'm sorry I cannot remember. I do remember t hat they were delicious and that I was very excited to learn that they planned to be there all winter. If I ever get rid of my current cold, I will head down there on a Monday and try to find out more...

              1. re: erica

                Thanks for the tip anyway. I may head to the market myself next Monday. Do you remember the name of the vendor, by any chance, or where his stall tends to be located?

                1. re: FoodDabbler

                  He was located on the west side of the market, on the strip that runs perpendicular to 17th Street. Not only were his potatoes great but he also had some of the lowest prices in the market.

                  1. re: erica

                    Healthway Farm from Highland, New York. They're on the west side of Union Square Greenmarket between 15th and 16th streets. Only there Monday. They have a very interesting selection of potatoes most at one dollar a pound. Last week I tried the Inca Gold ones, two dollars a pound because the seed is much more expensive but well worth it. Try some you'll probably be back for more.

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                    Union Square Greenmarket
                    Broadway and E 17th St, New York, NY 10003

                    1. re: BluPlateSpec

                      These are "yams (sweet potatoes)" we're talking about here......the way OP wrote it is confusing I know. I had a similar misunderstanding when I was searching for mine. Purple potatoes are a lot easier to find.

                      1. re: coll

                        Yes, there's a bit of confusion scattered through this thread about what potatoes we're discussing. The OP meant "purple sweet potatoes", not "sweet purple potatoes".

                        In any case, I went to the Union Sq. Greenmarket this morning. The Healthway Farm stand that BluePateSpec mentions carries potatoes mainly (blue and not), not sweet potatoes. They had none today (sweet potatoes), but they said they usually have a few. They do not carry Japanese sweet potatoes of any color. But the person womanning the stand pointed me to "Karl" and said he usually carries them. Karl turned out to be from Race Farms. That stand is surely the one Erica (hope you're feeling better) was pointing me to. They had three varieties of sweet potatoes today, none purple fleshed. But two looked slightly promising in my personal quest (mentioned above). Their cream-fleshed Japanese sweet potatoes had the red-black skin I remembered but not the weird shapes. A variety called Bouergard had the deep orange flesh I remembered but a more orange skin. I bought a couple of each and I just roasted them. Neither is the object of my quest. The Bouergard are sweet, but not perfumed. The Japanese are starchy and not very sweet. My quest continues.

                        1. re: FoodDabbler

                          Sorry about the confusion. I stopped by Healthway farm today and got more Inca Gold potatoes. this time I baked them instead of boiled and the were still outstanding; tasty, creamy and just moist enough.

                          1. re: FoodDabbler

                            HI, Food Dabbler! You are correct. It was Race Farms. I remembered the name when I read your post. But I am so sorry that they were not great...I can't think of where else to go until Lani's and BodhiTree return to the market in the spring..

            2. I just saw Japanese Sweet Potatoes at Barzini's on Broadway near 91st.

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              Barzini
              2455 Broadway, New York, NY 10024

              1. So I tried all the recommendations and here's the current report:

                Eataly, not available.
                WHole Foods, Columbus Circle: last time they had it was four months ago. They also said it was called "Adirondack Blue" potatoes. Not sure if it's the same sweet potato or another breed.
                Westerly Market, not available.
                Chinatown, not available.

                Good News!!! Just called Chelsea Market Fruit Exchange and they said they have it!! going to get it now. $1.19 a pound. Will report back if it's really true.

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                Eataly
                200 5th Ave, New York, NY 10010

                3 Replies
                1. re: ny.frenchfry

                  When did you go to Westerley? I just got them on Saturday there; they had a large box. (They are located across the aisle from the other sweet potatoes, sitting in front of their other produce) Many of them are relatively small, but they were in good shape. I also just got them at WHole Foods within the past month, though I have to admit I haven't gotten them in the last couple of weeks as I've been picking them up at Westerley. Good to know that Chelsea has them for $1.19 though, as at Westerley they are I think 2.49!
                  Edit: the adirondack blues are not the same thing (they look more similar to starchier peruvian purple potatoes); the person at Whole Foods may not have known what you were referring to, which would explain why they thought they hadn't had them in 4 months while in fact they have had them recently

                  1. re: ny.frenchfry

                    Where did you go in Chinatown? I almost always see them at Hong Kong Supermarket. Occasionally the vendors on Mott will also have them.

                    I've never seen them at Chelsea Market. Usually they carry the Purple Peruvians.

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                    Hong Kong Supermarket
                    157 Hester St, New York, NY 10013

                    1. re: JungMann

                      i saw them on the street once along canal and at a small market on bayard, one west of mott on the south side of the street.

                  2. UPdate: Called Barzini's and they don't have it.
                    Chelsea Market did not have it stock, just placed an order for a couple of pounds. We'll see if it's the right stuff. Should be in on Wednesday.

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                    Barzini
                    2455 Broadway, New York, NY 10024

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: ny.frenchfry

                      What was the outcome? Did you get your fix?

                      1. re: FoodDabbler

                        Got 'em! At Chelsea Market's Manhattan Fruit Exchange. They came in on Thursday. Delicious! You have to ask them to get them from the back room, I got 2.5 pounds, there's about ten pounds left in the box. They charged $2.99 a pound.

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                        Manhattan Fruit Exchange
                        75 9th Ave, New York, NY 10011

                        1. re: ny.frenchfry

                          So what exactly do they call them at the Fruit Exchange? I may have to make the trek to try them out..based on your comments.. Do they usually stock them?

                          Coll: Did you get them at Fruit Exchange and if not, where?

                          1. re: erica

                            I ordered a full case from Hunts Point, through my wholesaler.

                    2. I had to buy a case to get them, from what I'm told they are only available Nov to Jan. The ones I got were from Hawaii, I think those are well regarded. I gave most of them away to interested parties, but it was worth it to try. I'm going to say it was $45 for around 30 lbs? I guess I could have planted the leftover spuds next spring, but I didn't have any leftover.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: coll

                        You can just plant the peelings off of them. You don't have to plant the whole spud.

                      2. I have several that I got at a local market recently (I am in NC not NYC) but haven't prepared them yet. Mainly, I got them out of curiosity. My question is can the be used interchangeably with regular sweet potatoes or do they require some special preparation? Can someone recommend good ways to use them?

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: Leepa

                          I just baked them with a little oil and salt, like I do regular sweet potatoes, very different and worth a try. They don't get as soft, but still a nice texture.

                          1. re: Leepa

                            They do generally take significantly longer to cook and soften up; you can have them when they are firmer, but they get much sweeter once you fully cook them. They are also less fibrous than their orange counterparts. Otherwise, they would be relatively interchangeable; they are a different flavor profile (less vegetal sweetness, slightly more earthy), but I would imagine they would substitute well.

                            1. re: orthorunner

                              I tried them today at lunchtime. Other than the curiosity factor, I probably won't bother again. I thought they were a bit mealy once cooked. And they were fully cooked. Maybe they weren't fresh.

                          2. Chinatown. Any Chinese market sells it.