Associated with Hortus botanicus Leiden

Special Potatoes

On the 20th April 2018, potatoes were the central theme of a science café in the Hortus botanicus Leiden.

The subject triggered a lot of memories: ‘As a child I grew up in the north of the Netherlands where my family grew vegetables’, one visitor told us. ‘I learned a lot about potatoes at the time and I was interested in trying all kinds of them. My experience now is that the potatoes which are being sold in the supermarket taste different than before. They no longer have that rich flavour. I also think it's unfortunate that the supermarkets who are selling the different kinds of potatoes do not mention their names, even though we are a potato country.’

Chip van at Leiden science cafe

Photo credit: Stefanie Uit den Boogaard

The main attraction on this science café was a passionate local chips seller. He opened his mobile kitchen in the middle of the garden, and let visitors taste 3 different potatoes; the most novel of them had grown on a salt field on one of the Dutch isles. He only handed over a portion of free chips after a short talk with the visitor, with both parties enjoyed.