When it comes to origin stories, our royal potatoes have a curious tale to tell. Dig up the history of the Jersey Royal and tuck into our top tips on how to enjoy this local produce hero.
So how did they come to be? It’s all thanks to a tenacious local farmer named Hugh de la Haye who, in approximately 1880, stumbled upon an curiously large tuber and decided to see what would sprout from it in his St. Ouen’s Bay fields. Quite by chance, what grew was a crop of intriguingly small, kidney shaped spuds with a heavenly flavour. Tune in below to uncover the whole story…
Pick up a spud… and much more.
You can’t get fresher Jersey Royals than the spuds sold at the farms where they’re grown. Dotted around the island you’ll find roadside ‘hedge veg’ stalls and farm shops bursting with locally produced and grown goods just waiting to be enjoyed. Discover some of Jersey’s top farm shops and markets.
Christine and Didier Hellio are a husband and wife team growing a range of crops at their farm in St. Ouen. They supply fresh vegetables to a range of outlets on the Island as well as their own farm stall. We are both from farming backgrounds and have been married and working together for 27 years.
The Central and Beresford Street Markets are an integral part of Jersey’s heritage and a source of pride for many Islanders. The local markets have served the community for over 200 years. Both markets are lively, full of colours and smells and home to a wide range of local produce, crafts, goods and services.
Here at Woodlands Farm, not only can you see the herd grazing in the fields, but we have the Potato Shack café, gateway honesty box, the farm butchery and the crémière kitchen that are continually making artisan dairy products that are sold on the farm and around the island.
Royals on the menu.
You’re sure to find Jersey Royals on the menu throughout the year but if you visit between April and August, you’ll be treated to the cream of the crop and this is when most local cafés and restaurants will add the seasonal delicacy to their plates. Two prime places where you can be sure to tuck into these tasty spuds are the Potato Shack Café at Woodlands Farm, where they grow their own Jersey Royals – talk about field to fork! Or grab a picnic table at Faulkner Fisheries with sweeping views of St. Ouen’s Bay and devour fresh Jersey seafood with a generous side of buttered up Jersey Royals. Is your stomach rumbling yet?!
Raise a glass to Hugh de la Haye.
Our little island is home to not one, but two Jersey vodkas. Both borne out of a love for our scrumptious seasonal beauties, they’re just the tipples to warm the cockles of your heart. Whet your whistle with the Jersey Distillery Company’s artisan vodka ‘Fluke’ or La Mare’s craft, ‘Royal Vodka’. The best bit? They’re both made exclusively with our local potatoes.
Our suggestion is to serve both with a locally grown garnish.
The genuine article.
As an island, our pride and passion is our world famous local produce, ‘it’s a labour of love and pride as well; you’ve got to be dedicated to do it,” says Didier Hellio, a local Jersey Royals farmer. Jersey Royals are so special that they are the only potato in the UK to boast an EU Protected Designation of Origin status – making them a truly unique spud. As you explore the island, keep an eye out for the Genuine Jersey stamp, a hallmark of island life and a guarantee of local provenance. Explore just a few of the amazing local producers who are proud to say they are ‘genuinely Jersey’.
Small but mighty.
A healthy potato.
For such a tiny vegetable, Jersey Royals punch above their weight when it comes to health benefits. They’re packed full of fibre, are a great source of complex carbohydrates, have a hit of vitamin C and B and to top it off, are low in fat making them a deliciously healthy addition to your plate of Jersey produce.