50 Shots of America–Idaho


The Sweet PotatoWhat I know of Idaho is what I saw on the 5# sack of potatoes as a kid: what it’s shaped like and potatoes come from there. It’s one of the few states I could pick out on an unlabeled map, thanks to their simple but straightforward marketing plan. No surprise, there’s a lot more to our 43rd state than I realized.

After being excluded from the official boundaries of first Oregon and then Washington, The Gem State (so named as every known gem has been found in the state, including the rare star garnet) got it’s very own statehood on July 3, 1890. And, being mountainous doesn’t seem to to hamper it’s production of three varieties of wheat and close to a third of the country’s potatoes–the spud is the state vegetable, as one would presume, and the Annual Spud Day has been celebrated in Shelley since 1927.

The Sweet Potato

3/4 oz Vodka
1/2 oz Cointreau
1/2 oz Simple Syrup
1/4 oz Cinnamon Schnapps

Combine all ingredients over ice and shake, vigorously, as if you’re shushing down the mountainside. Strain into a chilled cordial glass.

It doesn’t taste like a sweet potato, with or without the buttery cinnamon topping, but it is sweet and, if you’ve got it handy, using potato-based vodka will make it that much more authentic.