Category Archives: potato

mash variations

I love mash. It’s such a simple but supremely satisfying dish. I usually can’t stop myself from dipping my finger into it already in the kitchen. Here are some hints how to make a great mash, some interesting variations on the basic recipe and some toppings that turn mash into a main dish.

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potato & chestnut purée

Subtly aromatic and slightly sweet, great with game, lamb and sausages.

300 g floury potatoes
150 ml warm milk
120 g butter
100 g chestnuts (peeled weight) or 50 g crème de marrons

Peel the potatoes, cut them into roughly equally sized pieces and cook in salt water until tender. Mash together with the chestnut purée, add hot milk and butter, mix well. Season with salt, nutmeg and black pepper.

If using fresh chestnuts: Make a half-circular incision in the chestnuts and roast them in a very hot oven or in a covered cast iron pan until slightly charred on the bottom and soft on the inside. Add some water to the pan and oven to keep them moist. Peel and mash together with the potatoes. Add some sugar to the mash, the sweetness is good here. Some cream can be added in this case as well.

Amarger mash

Farm cooking from La Lozere region in France. An imprecise recipe!
Floury potatoes, peeled and cooked for mashing, reserve cooking water.
FInely chopped cabbage, boiled until just soft in the same water.
Mash all together with some lard and add enough of the cooking water so the whole has a fairly loose consistency. Season lightly.

sweet potato gratin (serves 4-6)

Finally, a seriously simple but great gratin recipe.
1.5 kg sweet potatoes (or normal) washed and sliced into 5 mm slices
4 tsp sage, roughly choppped
6 garlic cloves, crushed with 2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground pepper
250 m double cream
Mix together everything but the cream. Arrange in a gratin dish by tightly packing handfuls of potato slices vertically (skin edges facing up) until dish is full. Cover with foil and bake in a 200’C oven for 45 minutes. Remove foil, pour over cream and bake a further 25 mins, or until potatoes are soft. Garnish with extra sage and serve.
Source: Ottolenghi

classic tortilla

1 c olive oil
4 large potatoes, sliced
1 large onion, sliced
4 eggs

Boil potatoes and onion in oil until just tender, drain while reserving oil and allow to cool. Whip eggs with salt to taste, add cooked vegetables and sit 15 minutes.

Heat 1 tb of oil in a fry pan until almost smoking and tip in egg mixture, shaking to loosen from bottom. To turn reverse onto a plate, add more oil to pan and slide tortilla back in.

Supplements: bacalau, reconstituted in several changes of water and flaked