Potatoes, Rebaked, Deviled, and Pied*

*Pied – liked baked in a pie – not multi-colored like the Pied Piper’s cape, but that is off subject. Potatoes are the subject.

Going through past posts on “Her spirits rose…” (for a new project – more about that soon), I came on the recipe for a quiche with a potato crust. I noticed because potatoes have been on my mind.

Have you read “The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society” by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows? A dear book, it’s about the solace and comfort of reading and about a young author’s serendipitous discovery of her next book (a tale for readers but also for writers), sad and awful in its historical truths, but loving and wonderful in its characters and their relationships to each other and to reading. The book peels back in on itself – nicely.

The novel’s structure, character development, plot, and setting unfold in epistolary style. The epistles being letters written in 1946 England between the young writer, Juliet Ashton, and some residents of Guernsey, one of the Channel Islands off the south coast of England.

Guernsey was occupied by the Germans during the war, and left by Britain to fend for itself. The Guernsey residents who become Juliet’s friends write their wartime stories to her. She becomes involved in their lives and, inevitably, travels to Guernsey. (See if you can read this and not want to journey to Guernsey yourself!)

The author, Mary Ann Shaffer (the book was finished by her niece Annie Barrows) does a masterful job with the characters. She reveals them completely through their letters, as they tell stories of wartime hardship and the unlikely way a literary society (of all things) helped counter fear and hunger. A potato peel pie appears (but is not recommended by the author.)

But back to recommended potatoes. I noticed these: Devilish Potatoes  and Angel Potatoes . Devil or angel – whichever you would like to call them – a zillion versions are found on the Web, which means using whatever flavors you associate with deviled eggs (spicy mustard, celery seed, paprika, or not).

New potatoes, an egg-like size, are coming soon. I used small red potatoes and made them simply with a little mayo, mustard, turmeric for color, and paprika.

Because they can be made ahead and served at room temperature, they’d be a great offering for a picnic, a potluck, or even – should you belong to one – the meeting of a literary society!

5 thoughts on “Potatoes, Rebaked, Deviled, and Pied*

  1. Katy, you are so right about reading the book and then wishing to visit the island ! I can’t do that today, but I will try the recipe for the deviled potatoes. YUM! ~Jane

  2. I had forgotten about that book, which I loved. You also reminded me about the “twice baked potatoes” my Aunt made for us when we ate meals at her house. I loved those too, because regular baked potatoes were too dry for me. But these little potato “boats” you made would be even better, since they appeal to my preference for small bits of food.

  3. A great book and what looks like a great recipe. Perfect for a baby shower potluck I’m going to in a couple of weeks. Thanks Katy—I may even have to dig my old deviled egg plate out of the closet.

  4. I loved the Guernsey book and I know I’d love these little taters! Stuffed potatoes (regular size) are a favorite with my family — I’m sure they’d like these. AND, I can use my grandmother’s deviled egg plate!

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