The potato is a root vegetable native to the Americas, a starchy tuber of the plant Solanum tuberosum. The potato is rarely eaten raw because raw potato starch is poorly digested by humans. There are close to 4,000 varieties of potato including common commercial varieties, each of which has specific agricultural or culinary attributes. In general, varieties are categorized into a few main groups based on common characteristics, such as russet potatoes (rough brown skin), red potatoes, white potatoes, yellow potatoes (also called Yukon potatoes) and purple potatoes. For culinary purposes, varieties are often differentiated by their waxiness: floury or mealy baking potatoes have more starch (20–22%) than waxy boiling potatoes (16–18%).
A traditional Hungarian dish, this is a stew that can be made even more hearty with the addition of potatoes. Quick and simple to make, this is a one-pot recipe that can scale for next-day lunch leftovers. This is a Mark Bittman recipe.