Suzi's Blog

Thanksgiving Mashed Potatoes Thanks to Joel Robuchon

If you need mashed potatoes today, Thanksgiving, and who doesn’t, then this is the best recipe. The best. I love this recipe because it combines metric and English measurement units. Just what you need to worry about with all the bustle today. So, as an act of kindness, 500 grams of potatoes is  1.1 pounds. 250 grams of butter is just over a half pound, 2 sticks.

No, this is not a record for the ratio of potatoes to butter. You want to induce cardiac disease? Then Google Patricia Wells. I believe she calls for equal proportions. Suzen and I love Patricia but there are limits to love.

 

Joel Robuchon’s Mashed Potatoes

Yield: Makes 8 servings

Ingredients:

  • 500 grams Ratte potatoes (fingerlings or Yukon’s can also be used)
  • 250 grams chilled unsalted high quality French butter– chilled and cut into small pieces
  • Hot Milk, as needed 1/2 -3/4 cup
  • Salt to taste

Preparation:

Scrub the potatoes, but do not peel the potatoes. Cook them in their skins covered by at least 1 inch of water. For each liter of water add 10 grams of salt. Simmer uncovered over moderate heat for 20-30 minutes or until a knife can easily be inserted and removed. As soon as the potatoes are done remove and drain. Do not allow them to sit in the water.

Meanwhile, bring the milk just to a boil in a medium sized saucepan and set aside

Once potatoes are cool enough to handle (but still hot), peel them and cut into manageable pieces. You can discard the skin or use them in another dish. Then pass the potatoes through the grid of a food mill (or use a potato ricer)passing them into a large heavy bottomed saucepan.

Discard the skin after it has been peeled away. Place the pan over low heat and using a wooden spatula stir the potatoes to dry them out (approximately 4-5 minutes).

Begin adding 3/4 of the butter, little by little vigorously stirring until the butter is incorporated. This should be done in a similar manner as one prepares any butter emulsion (starting off with a very small amount of butter to start the emulsion).

Slowly add the milk in a thin stream (a little at a time) till the desired consistency is reached. You may only need a very small amount of the milk, depending on the potatoes used, amount of butter used, and personal taste. Stir vigorously till all the milk is incorporated.

Then stir the puree with a whisk to incorporate air and make the puree fluffy.

Pass the puree through a fine drum sieve to further lighten and smooth the dish. This can be repeated 2 or 3 times for to make the puree silky smooth.

Taste for seasoning. If not using immediately, place in the top of a double boiler over simmering water. Whisk occasionally to keep smooth. The puree can be further adjusted with hot milk or butter before serving

If you don’t serve the potatoes immediately you can keep them warm for an hour using a double boiler.

Remember because they are so rich you only need a small amount per person.

Source: Joel Robuchon and the website: http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:http://greenmarketrecipes.com/vegetables/robuchons_mashed_pototoes.htm&hl=en&strip=1

Greek Lemon Potatoes

 

Last weekend Suzen and I had an official “urban weekend.” Rather than go upstate, we decided to enjoy the city.

Saturday was a bike ride up the West Side from Tribeca to the George Washington Bridge. Well, we did stop at 97th Street with a flat. You should know that on 96th Street, just uphill east of Broadway by two doors, there is a lovely bike shop, who will patch or replace, install, lube and get you on your way again.

Sunday, we saw the Monet’s Garden exhibit at the New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx. There are few months left to see this homage to water lilies.

And we finished the weekend with our first visit to Astoria, Queens, famous for its United Nations array of restaurants from around the world. Astoria is famous for Greek food and we had a lovely meal [restaurant to be blogged soon!]. Being Irish, my favorite dish was potatoes, but not Irish style. We had Greek lemony potatoes, rich in lemon and oregano flavor. [I’m told oregano is Greek for “joy of the mountain.”].

I searched the web and found this version of a recipe for this fine side fare for your table. Here we have the potatoes, lemon juice, oregano, and a healthy amount of lamb stock.

This recipe scales easily. If you are having a holiday weekend feast this Labor Day, then the perfect accompaniment for that roasted chicken or sausage is this zesty potato dish.

Greek Lemon Potatoes

Yield: serves 6

Ingredients:

  • 3 pounds Yukon gold potatoes or 3 pounds other waxy potatoes, peeled
  • ½ cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • ⅓ cup olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 (14 ½ ounce) can chicken broth or 2 cups lamb stock

Preparation:

Peel potatoes and cut them in half (from medium size potatoes, quarter if large). Let them stand in water while preparing sauce.

Combine all other ingredients in a gallon size “zipper” bag, and shake to combine.

Dry off the potatoes, and put all of them in the bag and let marinate for 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 400°F.

Put the potatoes and marinade in a large casserole, preferably a white Pyrex, approximately 13 x 9 x 3 inches oval.

Roast for 1hr 10min, turning occasionally. You’ll want to check for doneness starting at about 50 minutes.

There should be plenty of sauce left over after roasting.

Optionally, you can put these under the broiler for 5 minutes to crisp them up just before serving.

Garnish with sauce and parsley.

Source: Anthony Gougoutris at food.com; photo by Lorac