To Peel Your Vegetables or Not
I recently came across a pretty gnarly blemish on one of my potatoes and found myself asking the question should I peel it or not?
I know that the skins on some vegetables have health benefits, so I generally leave it on unless I’m using potatoes to make a really creamy mashed potato recipe, or carrots to make a carrot confit. But with the look of this previously mentioned potato peel, I decided to peel it….
And that takes us to:
Things I Ask Myself Before Peeling
This list is useful for all vegetables that have a peel and should help you decide whether or not you want to peel!
- How Much Time Do I Have? The number one question I find myself asking is whether or not I have time. Sometimes you’re in a rush and peeling not only requires extra work, but also extra cleanup. If your recipes texture won’t change with the peel on, go ahead and leave it and save yourself some time!
- What Am I Using This Veggie For? I always keep note of what the actual use of this vegetable is going to be in the recipe. For instance, if I’m making sushi…I always peel my cucumbers. I feel the peel gives it an unpleasantly hard texture. If I’m making a stew, I’ll leave the peels on the potatoes and the carrots because it doesn’t affect the dish’s overall texture.
- How Does the Skin Look? If I don’t need to peel a potato for a recipe but I notice an ugly blemish or excessive dirt, I’ll go ahead and peel it. Same goes for carrots and zucchini. If the skin looks a mess, but you know the vegetable isn’t bad, just peel it for safety and aesthetics.
- Is This Vegetable Organic? One of the main reasons why peeling became such a fad, is due to the amount of pesticides being used in modern farming techniques. If you’re buying organic, you don’t have the time, you’re using it in a soup, and it looks fine…don’t bother peeling it! Wash it well and you’re good to go!
- Do I Enjoy the Taste and/or Texture of This Peel? This one’s pretty self-explanatory. If you or whomever you’re cooking for hates roasted potatoes with the skins on…peel them! This is really a matter of preference, but if you want to try something new or different, leave the skins on and see how it goes! You might be in for a crunchy, flavorful surprise.
So those are the questions I ask myself before peeling vegetables…how about you!? Are there any vegetables that you peel no matter what? Let me know in the comments section below!