Potatoes

Potatoes
Item# newitem104454704

Today, most potatoes worldwide fall under one of about seven different potato species. In the Andes, roughly 3,000 different potato varieties are grown and sold. The Incas cooked potatoes in stews, baked them in coals, and prepared them for storage. The Incas invented chuno, the first freeze dried potatoes- a precursor to present-day instant mashed potatoes. The potatoes were thinly sliced and placed in rows outside, where they eventually froze overnight. Each morning for several days, ice crystals were removed from the potato slices until they were dry. Freeze-dried potatoes fed Incan families over long winters and famines, and were stored in warehouses for feeding the army or hungry citizens. They were also placed at "rest stops" along Incan roads to feed travelers on thier journeys.