The 2 Best Types Of Potatoes To Use For Silky Potato Soup

If there is one tuber that earned the title of the world's favorite food, it's the potato — no contest. We chop that starchy vegetable into every dish we humanly can in every country around the world. Maybe it's because they are cheap and easy to grow, or maybe it's because they are simply delicious. Regardless, you can find potatoes incorporated into every dish imaginable, including curries, salads, gyros, chowder, stews, masala dosa, and basically any classic breakfast food (think cheesy hashbrowns, roasted potatoes, fried potatoes, and so on next to a side of eggs and bacon).

China is currently the world's largest potato producer, closely followed by India, and the United States lands in fifth place (via Statista). In total, the International Potato Center says that 7,000 potato varieties are currently grown throughout 100 countries. This makes the humble yet versatile plant the third highest-ranking food crop in the world, with rice and wheat in first and second place, respectively. The annual global potato harvest is estimated to weigh over 300 million metric tons! Since there is a vast number of potatoes to choose from, certain varieties will work better in certain recipes than others.

Understanding potato types and differences

When it comes to soups, you want to make sure you're picking the right potatoes for the job. A poorly chosen potato can make or break your recipe and end up turning what is supposed to be a creamy, warm dish into something grainy and unappetizing. If you are looking for a potato to blend into your soup with a silky, fluffy consistency, your best bets are the russet potato and Yukon Gold. Russet potatoes work well in what are supposed to be lightly-colored soups. The russet lends its naturally starchy characteristic to create a super creamy soup, and roasting it beforehand enriches its hearty flavor.

If you're looking for a buttery and more colorful veggie, that's where the Yukon Golds come in. The Potato Association says that Yukon Golds are medium-to-large in size and have a natural yellow hue, distinguishing them from the russet potato. Yukons work beautifully in recipes like smoked potato soup and chilled vichyssoise, which rely on a quality potato to give the dishes their classic creamy, rich flavors.