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21st Jun 2019

Ranking the best and worst forms of potato in the world

Wayne Farry

Sweet, delicious potatoes

Potatoes are the best food in the world. You can have your steaks, your chicken wings, your lamb shanks, your burgers, your oysters, your lobster, your quinoa, your Corn Flakes, your pork chops, your Twix bars and your Ryvita – but potatoes will always come out on top.

What makes potatoes so great – such a GOAT food – is the versatility of this soil-covered ball in the dirt.

You can do almost anything with them and have a different type of meal depending on what you choose.

In the interest of having nothing better to do historical record, we have decided to rank the different forms of potato, from worst to best, and there are a fucking tonne of them.

So strap yourself in to this potato car seat as we drive down potato lane to potato paradise. Potato.

15) Crisps

Before you grab your potato pitch fork and arrive at our offices with vengeance on your mind, we are not saying crisps are bad per se. They are just the least good form of potato. They lack the body of the really good potato forms, and have too many variations to be considered one thing. In fact, watch this space for a ranking of crisps. But for now, they sit in last place.

14) Waffles

Great when you’re a little baby, but when you grow up you realise that they’re a bit like mashed potato but not as good, and a bit like chips but not as good either. Their only saving grace is that they can be cooked in the toaster.

13) Simple boiled potatoes

Are they bad? No. But they are a bit flavourless as is. They need salt and pepper, and a bit of butter, to get anywhere near Flavourtown. These are the potatoes that Neil Warnock eats every night with an overcooked pork chop. Enough said.

12) Dauphinoise and gratin

These are slightly different (one is cooked sliced potato and the other is sliced before it’s cooked) but they’re essentially the same thing: soggy crisps in a pool of cream. They’re delicious, but there’s better out there.

11) Baked potatoes

Baked potatoes have a weirdly inflated reputation in this world of ours. They’re considered some sort of treat when in fact they are just potatoes placed in an oven at a high heat, and then covered in beans. They are slow toast, essentially. Overrated.

10) Hasselback potatoes

Tory roast potatoes. Like a regular roast potato but with loads of unnecessary cuts.

9) Gnocchi

Are you pasta or potato? Make your fucking mind up.

8) Mashed potatoes

An absolute classic, no doubt. Bit of salt and pepper and you’re sorted. Goes with absolutely everything – gravy, beans, more gravy – you name it. Nothing but respect for these soft boys.

7) Rosti

Rosti is essentially a fancy hash brown. It’s grated – like hash browns – but a bit more deconstructed. Has a very high opinion of itself, which downgrades it a touch.

6) Potato croquettes

Mashed potato covered in breadcrumbs. Deep fried. A sprinkle of salt. If you’re not salivating right now then you’re not human. One of the best things about Christmas dinner, croquettes are like a savoury Ferrero Rocher. They make you feel really fancy, and in the end that’s the most important thing.

5) Boxty

(Image: The Spruce Eats)

If you know, you know. If you don’t, get yourself to the northwest of Ireland and find out.

4) Potato skins

(Image: WikiHow)

The food that crisps think and wish they were. Crispy, warm and glistening with grease. They are the GOAT snack.

3) Hash browns

The staple of any good breakfast. Crispy, delicious, processed beyond belief. Great with a burger and with breakfast, great by itself or accompanied by six more hash browns. But enough of this, I’m not here to convince you to like hash browns, that’s God’s job.

2) Chips

Oh, yes, chips. The great leveller. From the mightiest Pharaoh to the lowliest peasant, who doesn’t enjoy a good chip? Absolutely no one on earth, that’s who. I can’t even begin to tell you how good chips are. They are your favourite food as a child and as you grow you realise that you can eat them at any time of the day, every day. The fact that we prevent ourselves from doing so is the greatest proof of free will that we have.

1) Roast potatoes

The only thing better than a chip is a roast potato. It was always going to be this, wasn’t it? The ultimate. The roastie combines the best parts of other forms of potato. The crispy exterior of a chip, the fluffy centre of mash, it’s all there, wrapped in a golden nugget of flavour.