Can You Eat Undercooked Potatoes? (And How to Fix Them)
Potatoes are one of the most consumed vegetables in the world. They are the 4th most produced and consumed crop and are served worldwide in several ways.
Cooked potatoes have a tender texture and are chewable but also have just the right degree of firmness. This vegetable is also one of the easiest to undercook as many people may make this common mistake.
Can you eat undercooked potatoes? The answer depends on how undercooked the potatoes are. If they are completely raw then the answer is no. If they are 60-70% cooked, then the answer would be most likely, yes. Thankfully, there are a few things that you can do to fix them if they are undercooked.
Read on below to find out how to properly cook potatoes and how to fix undercooked batches easily!
What Could Go Wrong?
Potatoes are boiled, fried, baked, and cooked with various dishes as well. But if you are trying to cook them at home, there are a few things that you should be wary of.
There are several species of potatoes and each has its own cooking time and instructions.
But there are several definitive ways that can help you get the most delicious and perfectly tender potatoes every time. But before we get into it, let’s first discuss a few common problems that many people face when cooking potatoes at home.
Everyone has their own approach when it comes to cooking this vegetable. Some leave the skin on while others would peel and cut the potatoes before cooking them.
The best practice when it comes to making potatoes is to first wash them properly under clear water and then peel them. You will need to rinse the potatoes again to get rid of the excess starch on the surface.
Here are a few great ways and tips to cook potatoes the right way!
Boiled potatoes are a hugely popular method of cooking this versatile vegetable. To boil potatoes the right way, you will need to first, peel, clean and then cut the potatoes into 4 pieces.
If your goal is to mash the potatoes then we recommend that you cut the potatoes into smaller pieces so that they boil properly.
A large intact potato will take a lot of time to cook compared to the same potato cut in pieces. This strategy will also lower the chances of you having to deal with undercooked potatoes.
A great way to check for doneness is to either take out one piece of the potato and mash it with the back of a spoon, or to stick a fork in the piece to see if it goes through completely without any resistance.
The potato should be tender enough while also retaining its shape and allowing the fork to pass through without breaking it apart.
This method is one of the quickest ways to cook potatoes as other methods (like oven roasting) can take considerably more time and attention.
Instant Pot/Pressure Cooker
Cooking in an instant pot is another great way to cook potatoes fast. To use this method, just follow the instructions as per above and add the potatoes to the instant pot.
Seal and let it come to a boil, allow the potatoes to cook for about 10-12 minutes or until the whistle goes off at least 2 times.
Let the potatoes rest in the pressurized pot for about 5 minutes and then release the excess steam and check for doneness.
When using this method, you should ideally try to keep the skin on so that the potatoes don’t break apart under pressure.
But don’t worry, even if you peel them the potatoes are likely to hold together so long as you don’t overcook them or cook them for more than 12 minutes.
Baking potatoes is another great way to get the most out of this vegetable. Unlike boiling, baking potatoes will cause them to crisp and caramelize as well, giving them additional flavor and making them even more delicious.
There are hundreds of recipes that call for baked potatoes and the great thing about this method is that it can make ordinary potatoes and turn them into something extraordinary with just a sprinkle of salt and pepper.
It’s simple, it is convenient and the results speak for themselves.
When baking potatoes, here are a few tips to keep in mind:
- Clean the potato and with a fork, stab it all over at least 10 times. This will allow the steam to escape and cook the potato thoroughly.
- Place a foil over the baking tray and let it preheat for about 10 minutes at 450°F.
- Place the potato over the foil and let it cook for about 20 minutes on one side.
- After 20 minutes, take out the potato and lightly brush it with some oil or butter. You may also season it with salt or other spices.
- Put the potato back in the oven. Make sure that you keep the side that hasn’t cooked on top this time. This way the potato will cook on all sides without leaving any uncooked corner. Cook for another 20 minutes.
- Once done, gently stick a fork in the potato, you should feel no resistance at all while putting the fork in. You can also use a BBQ stick to check for doneness. Allow the potato to rest for about 10 minutes and serve by placing it in a foil or just cut it in pieces and serve hot.
There are 2 ways to bake a potato. You can either bake it whole or cut it into cubes and bake it with additional seasoning.
Both methods will require you to leave the potatoes unpeeled as it will help them retain their shape and also allow them to cook better as the skin will trap in heat.
We usually peel potatoes while boiling because most people just end up discarding the skin anyway but you can also boil potatoes with the peel on if you feel that they keep breaking apart in the water.
Don’t worry, having the skin on while boiling will have a very insignificant effect on its cooking time.
But when it comes to baking, oven roasting potatoes with the skin on is not only going to allow them to cook efficiently but will also lend a bit of flavor and texture when you bite into the potato.
You can follow the same steps for potatoes that are cut into cubes as well.
Allow the potatoes to cook for about 10 minutes, then apply oil/butter and seasonings and cook for another 20 minutes or until lightly caramelized on top.
You can even microwave uncooked potatoes for about 5-8 minutes if you don’t want to wait for the oven to reheat or the water to come to a boil again.
Just place the undercooked potatoes in a microwave-safe bowl, add 2-3 tablespoons of water and cover the top of the bowl with a plastic wrap.
Poke a few holes at the top to vent and let the potatoes cook for about 5-8 minutes or until done. You can continue cooking the potatoes for an additional 5 minutes if they are still not cooked.
How To Fix Undercooked Potatoes
The best way to fix undercooked potatoes is to allow them to cook using the same method as used before they came out undercooked.
For example, to fix undercooked boiled potatoes, just boil them for an additional 10 minutes at 212°F or at a rolling boil.
To fix baked potatoes simply first preheat the oven at 450°F for 10 minutes and then cook them for about 15 minutes.
If the potatoes are already caramelized then move the rack to a lower level, away from the heat source in the oven. Check for doneness and serve hot.
Should You Be Worried After Eating Undercooked Potatoes?
Ideally, eating some undercooked potatoes will not cause any medical emergency. At most, you might face some digestion issues for a while which should clear in about a day.
In most cases, nothing will happen if you eat partially undercooked potatoes. Eating completely or significantly undercooked potatoes could at most cause some digestion problems for a day or two.
But even then, the odds of someone eating a whole uncooked potato are uncommon.
This is because uncooked potatoes are really difficult to chew and one can usually easily tell from the first bite whether if the potatoes are cooked or undercooked.
Remember, cooked potatoes are completely tender but firm. Uncooked potatoes are hard to chew, not tender, and difficult to break apart as well.
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