Wednesday, December 28, 2011

A Colonial Potato Wreath

Cotton blossoms, white pine, bittersweet and antlers

This year Christmas was spent in Chesapeake with my boyfriend's awesome family. A dinner in Colonial Williamsburg was a real treat as I had never been at Christmas and they are quite famous for their natural and authentic decorations- so, word to the wise: be sure to arrive before nightfall- colonial times did not include Christmas lights.

 We just loved the decorations and kept trying to figure out all the fruit, vegetables, dried flowers and other ornamentals that comprised each wreath. Pomegranates, oysters, apples, artichokes, bread rolls, playing cards, sliced and dried clementines, and even some burlap and woven wool were mixed into white pine, boxwood and fraiser fir wreaths. We were in love and vowed to make our own versions next year.

Natural wreaths and my momma

But then we got an idea. One hearty vegetable had been overlooked and we couldn't find one single potato in those adornments. Maybe they didn't have pretty potatoes back in the day, but today, you can pick up some gorgeous pink and purple potatoes in just about any grocery store. On our way back from dinner, we stopped off to get the necessary stuff to make our own natural wreath and here is what we came up with:

Do you love it? I love it. It's a freaking edible potato wreath! I have some ideas on how to improve the wreath for next year, but I would say this was a huge success. Looks good with a candle too. 

Tag's Potato Wreath
If possible, get similar sized potatoes which will help them roast evenly when you decide to cook the wreath.
  • Assortment of mini white, red and purple potatoes
  • 3-4 springs of rosemary
  • 2 disposable pie dishes
  • Olive oil
  • Salt & pepper
  • Garlic powder
Using some kitchen sheers or scissors, cut a line through the middle leaving about 3 inches to the edge of the pie dish on both sides. Cut a few more lines through the middle of that line until you can easily bend the pointy edges back onto themselves (towards the edge of the pie dish) to create a sort of edge around the middle of the dish. You can kinda see this in the first picture of the wreath above. Do this with 2 pie dishes for some added support. Stack the pie dishes on top of one another.

Wash and scrub your potatoes and start adding them to the ring, making sure to alternate the colors. Add some springs of rosemary in and round the potatoes, trying to mask the edge of the pie dish.

At this point you can leave the wreath on a table for a few days before the rosemary starts wilting. If you'd like to keep it longer, you can either some water to the base of the ring or stick the rosemary stems in some water tubes hidden under the potatoes.

Once you are ready to eat the wreath, just add over the top, a tablespoon or two of olive oil, some salt, pepper and maybe a few shakes of garlic powder and roast in your oven set at 375 degrees for about 20 minutes or until tender. If some of your potatoes are much larger, you might want to cut them in half to ensure even cooking.

I left before the wreath was cooked but I imagine it was gorgeous on the table and tasty on the plate!

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