Potatoes are an important food source. They are the most widely cultivated vegetable in the world. An average-sized potato weighing between 6 and 8 ounces contains fewer than 100 calories. Potatoes consist of about 80 percent water, 20 percent solid matter and have a high nutritional value. Starch makes up about 85 percent of this solid mass and the rest is protein. Potatoes provide vitamins including niacin, riboflavin, thiamin, and vitamin C. They also contain minerals such as calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, and sulfur.
Potatoes, regardless of their variety, should be well shaped, firm with relatively smooth skin and only a few shallow eyes. Pick those with good color without cuts, dark or soft spots, wrinkles or wilted skin or any that have started to sprout. Store in burlap, brown paper, or perforated plastic bags away from light, in the coolest, non-refrigerated and well-ventilated part of the house.
Remove any deep eyes, sprouts or green spots and scrub under cold water before cooking. Potatoes can be baked, boiled, steamed, fried, microwaved or grilled.