The Food Guy, Steven Keith Eating his way through the state, plate by plate

It’s National Potato Day! Try These Tasty Spuds

Garlic Fondant Potatoes
Garlic Fondant Potatoes

In honor of National Potato Day – today! – skip the greasy fries and boring mash in favor of this recipe for glorious Garlic Fondant Potatoes.

It’s not a “quick” recipe, taking about 40 minutes stovetop from start to finish. But it’s a classic dish that makes an excellent accompaniment with grilled or baked fish, poultry or meats.

Fondant Garlic Potatoes

2 large potatoes
1 oz. butter
1 tsp. olive oil
1 clove garlic, crushed
8 oz. chicken stock (or vegetable stock)
salt and black pepper, to taste


  1. Peel the potatoes, cut a thin slice from the top and the bottom of each (enough so it can stand upright on its own) then cut each potato in half width-ways. The ideal size is around 2-inches deep, but a little more or less won’t matter so long as all the pieces are the same size.
  2. If you want the traditional round-sided barrel shape, use a plain dough cutter (around 2-inches in diameter, depending on how large your potatoes are) to cut uniform shapes, then trim the sharp edges from the tops and bottoms to give a more rounded effect.
  3. Heat the butter and olive oil over a medium heat in a small pan which has a tight-fitting lid. Once it starts to foam but not color, add the potatoes, season with salt and pepper and sauté gently for around 5 minutes, basting from time to time, until golden brown.
  4. Turn the potatoes over and continue to sauté for another 5 minutes, basting once or twice, until golden brown.
  5. Very carefully add the garlic and enough stock to come about one third up the sides of the potatoes. (Take care as it will splutter fiercely.) Bring to simmering point then cover with a lid, reduce the heat and cook very gently for around 20 minutes or until the potatoes are very tender. Check half way through the cooking and add a little more stock if necessary to prevent it drying out and sticking. Serve with any remaining liquid poured over the top of the potatoes. 

Serves 2. Recipe courtesy of

Today is “National Donut Day,” which should be cause for celebration but is actually a day of mourning for Charlestonians. Turns out the nation’s most popular donut is no longer available in town.

According to Yahoo! (pronounced Ya-WHOOOOOOOO!), Dunkin Donuts is the most-searched donut shop in America. But unless someone can prove otherwise, I don’t know of a Dunkin’ Donut shop that exists in the Kanawha Valley anymore. Anyone?

We can rejoice in the news that the county’s second most-popular donut shop, Krispy Kreme, is well-represented at its South Charleston Riverwalk shop and countless grocery stores, gas stations and more around the valley. (Donuts rounding out the top 10 are mostly from the Midwest and West Coast, except for Sublime Donuts in Atlanta and Shipley’s Do-Nuts in the South.)

So if you’re driving along MacCorkle Avenue SW today and just happen to see Krispy Kreme’s red “HOT DONUTS NOW” sign calling your name, give in to the temptation. It’s a holiday!

If you caught today’s column
(, you already know there’s a day or month to celebrate just about anything you put in your mouth.

I mentioned that tomorrow is National Cheese Lovers Day, Sunday is National Pie Day and January is National Soup Month. But it’s also Bread Machine Baking Month, National Candy Month, National Egg Month, National Meat Month, National Hot Tea Month, National Oatmeal Month and National Wheat Bread Month and – are you ready for this? – National Prune Breakfast Month.

Plus there’s a food-related celebration almost every day of the year. (No kidding, check it out.)

The list goes on and on, but how do you keep track of it all?

A reader sent me this handy link ( offering a nice round-up.

We just missed Peking Duck Day (yesterday, dang) but can make up for it with National Popcorn Day (today), National Peanut Butter Day (Sunday) and Chocolate Cake Day (Jan. 27).

But if all those treats get you a little, uh, irregular – never fear. February is National Fiber Focus Month.