DEAR KAREN: I purchased a variety bag of potatoes and one of them was purple. Can you tell me how to use it?
—Fran Melton, Sun City, Arizona


Purple potatoes, which are originally from South America, are also known as purple Peruvian potatoes and have been gaining popularity in the United States. Available primarily in the fall, these potatoes have a slightly nutty flavor and add terrific color to the dinner plate.

They do best in recipes that are prepared in the microwave, which will preserve their unique color. Roasting, steaming and baking are also great methods to prepare the purple potato, however, boiling will cause them to fade. Try substituting a couple of these potatoes in any recipe that uses red or Yukon potatoes and prepare the recipe as directed for a real eye-catching dish!