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Painter Vincent van Gogh made the Dutch famous for eating potatoes, but it were the French who made the potato popular. Pharmacist Parmentier, who worked for Louis XVI, fought against the prejudice that the potato would be poisonous. He planted potatoes around Paris and used the army to guard them. Now the people started to believe something so heavily protected should be worth a lot.
Nowadays, there's not a lot left to remember Parmentier. A mall tomb at the Père Lachaise graveyard, a subway-station with his name, that's about it.
However, on a French menu you may still find a hachis Parmentier: mashed potatoes with onions and minced meat from the oven.
Supertoinnette gives the full story about the potato and lots of recipes.
Posted by Peter on august 9, 2006 at 08:00 AM
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