February is Idaho Potato Lovers’ Month!
To celebrate Idaho Potato Lovers’ Month I’m sharing these magical Crispy Roasted Idaho Fingerling Potatoes with Pepper Jack Cheese and Bacon, and there’s a fun giveaway for you too! How did I get so excited about Idaho Fingerlings?
A few weeks ago Don Odiorne and Jamie Bowen from the Idaho Potato Commission visited San Diego to host a dinner for some San Diego food bloggers to kick off Idaho Potato Lovers’ Month. We feasted on chef-prepared Idaho potato dishes at Prep Kitchen in La Jolla, and enjoyed a wonderful evening catching up. Several of us had participated in the Idaho Harvest Tour in October with Don and Jamie. We were thrilled to introduce more of our blogging friends to these wonderful folks from the Idaho Potato Commission.
San Diego Adventure
Earlier in the day I picked up Don and Jamie at their hotel in San Diego to show them around the area. After all, they toured me around Idaho…it was the least I could do! I had a little trouble driving to their hotel in Little Italy, as a water main had broken and the streets were flooding! Little did we know that the Idaho Potato Lovers’ Dinner scheduled at the Prep Kitchen in Little Italy would be moved to La Jolla. Thankfully we were able to connect with everyone who was coming to the dinner to tell them about the location change…without cell phones and IPads, we would have had a problem!
The weather could not have been nicer! After a hearty breakfast (including Idaho fingerling potatoes) at Great Maple, we headed out to Cabrillo National Monument to enjoy the magnificent views of San Diego and the glorious Pacific Ocean. It was so clear that we could seen the huge rocks in the ocean to the south of us in Mexico! Driving up the coast, we stopped at a beach so Don and Jamie could get their feet wet. Then on to the ranch for a quick bowl of soup with fresh California avocados from our trees!
Idaho Potato Commission Dinner with San Diego Food Bloggers
When we finally arrived at Prep Kitchen in La Jolla, the area for the party was all ready…a beautiful open deck to enjoy a San Diego winter evening outside, warmed with patio heaters, Idaho potato culinary delights, and of course, wine!
Served family style, we enjoyed Fingerling Potato and Cheese Flatbread, a Cutting Board with artisan cured meats, cheeses, house-made spreads and pickled vegetables. Roasted Beet and Goat Cheese Salad (including avocado!) was a highlight of the evening, followed by Organic Porter Braised Short Ribs and Pan Seared Mahi Mahi. Salt Roasted Fingerling Potatoes were given a short dip in the fryer, accompanied by caramelized onions, herbs, and garlic confit. (My Fave.) Some of us could not stop munching on the Marinated and Roasted Sweet Peppers with garlic, rosemary, caramelized onions and olive oil. For dessert: Pumpkin & Caramel Bread Pudding with Vanilla Custard Brioche, Candied Pepitas & Whipped Cream. Oh my.
Each of us carried home boxes of food to share with our families, and an Idaho Potato goodie bag with none other than Mini Spuddy Buddy! Keep reading because I’m giving away TWO of these Idaho Potato goodie bags to celebrate Idaho Potato Lover’s Month!
I just found out that Fresh Idaho® potatoes are certified by the American Heart Association as a heart-healthy food, and naturally contain many of the nutrients your heart needs to be strong. February just happens to be National Heart Month too! Plus, Idaho Fingerling Potatoes come in three colors: yellow, pink, and purple. Such fun!
Crispy Roasted Idaho Fingerling Potatoes Recipe
My favorite way to prepare Idaho fingerlings is to put them in a plastic bag to coat them in olive oil, lay them on a baking pan, and sprinkle seasonings on top. Garlic powder, chili powder, paprika, sea salt, pepper, dried herbs; be creative! Roast the fingerling potatoes in a hot oven (375-400 degrees) until they are crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside. I could eat them just like that every night for dinner and leftovers for lunch!
We enjoyed Crispy Roasted Idaho Fingerlings with Bacon and Pepper Jack Cheese as our treat for the big football game, which happened to be on February 1st this year. What a way to kick off Idaho Potato Lovers’ Month in my kitchen!
After the potatoes are perfectly roasted, transfer the potatoes to a serving dish. Okay, you can have one or two to nibble on!
Grate the pepper jack cheese and chop up a few slices of crispy cooked bacon. Mound the grated cheese on top of the hot potatoes and watch it start to melt…then sprinkle bacon bits into that ooey-gooey melted cheese. Slide the potatoes back into the oven for a few minutes to finish melting the cheese.
Crispy Roasted Idaho Fingerlings are delicious with any flavor of melted cheese and bacon, or other toppings like onions, tomatoes, salsa, different kinds of cheeses, sliced black olives…anything you would put on a pizza or on nachos would be delicious on Idaho fingerling potatoes!
Idaho Potato Lovers’ Month Giveaway!
I would love to send you one of those cute goodie bags from the Idaho Potato Commission! If you’d like to win one, just leave a comment below about Idaho potatoes. Do you cook and serve Fingerling potatoes at your house? If so, what’s your favorite way to enjoy them? If not, what’s your favorite potato dish?
You must be a resident of the USA and be over 18 to enter. To enter, just leave one comment on this post about Idaho potatoes between February 12, 2015 and midnight on February 19, 2015 Pacific Standard Time. The winner will be chosen from a random drawing. I’ll notify the winner on February 20th, and I’ll need a valid mailing address at that time. If I don’t hear from the winners via e-mail within 24 hours of notification, I’ll draw a new name and the new winner will have 24 hours to respond.
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO WIN.
VOID where prohibited by law.
The Giveaway Items are provided by Mimi Avocado. All prizes will be awarded.
Not responsible for technical failures, typographical errors, or resolving identity disputes related to the winner.
Number of eligible entries determines odds of winning.
Disclosure: I was not required nor compensated to write this post. I was a guest of the Idaho Potato Commission at the Idaho Potato Lover’s Dinner where I received Idaho Potato goodie bags. I also received Idaho Fingerling potatoes as a gift. All opinions and experiences are mine. As a new member of the Cabot Cheese Board blogger network I gratefully accepted a gift box of Cabot cheeses, included the Pepper Jack cheese used in this recipe.