On Mashed Potatoes

Click here for this recipe.

The NYT’s Dining Section has a great article on perfecting mashed potatoes. It advises cooks to relax: perfect mashed potatoes are easy to make.

Here are the article’s pearls of wisdom:

  • Buy potatoes from either local farmers and/or buy “A” grade potatoes, the largest ones available.
  • Peel & cut your potatoes before boiling; this results in potatoes that are more evenly cooked and less waterlogged.
  • Use lots of cooking water and salt it liberally — but it doesn’t seem to matter if you cook the potatoes when the water is cold or when the water is at a rolling boil.
  • Boil the taters until they’re very soft. The tip of a pointy knife should go right through the the center, but drain the potatoes before the “get shaggy around the edges, a sign that they are dissolving in the pot.” Start getting your butter, or butter and milk, hot and ready.
  • Drain the potatoes well, then steam them right away — toss them around in the hot pan or over very low heat for a minute.
  • Toss in your hot butter (butter/milk) and get mashing. Use a hand masher “with a flat face, a grid pattern and crisp edges where the potato meets the masher” or pop them into a stand mixer. A “light” mashing will yield fluffy potatoes, while a more thorough one will yield a “creamier, denser dish.” Be careful not to go to far, though, or you’ll enter into wallpaper paste territory.
  • Taste, season with additional salt and butter if needed, and serve!
Here’s a link to the recipe that accompanies the article but if you’re looking for mashed potatoes that are OVER-THE-TOP DELICIOUS, give these Company’s Coming Mashed Potatoes a try!
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