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Fat Guy

Potato Puree, Mashed Potatoes, Pommes

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1 hour ago, Anna N said:

 I think many of us have made them this  way!   The scallions are optional.

Sous-vide and pressure cookers are out of my league (at the moment). I'm an old-fashioned Luddite, I guess.:)

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On 8/11/2017 at 6:13 PM, Toliver said:

An interesting way to make mashed potatoes...boil them in the cream and butter you were going to add after they're cooked:

"You’re Making Mashed Potatoes All Wrong"

My mom never poured the potato water down the drain. It was saved to make the gravy. 

 

Has anyone made mashed potatoes this way?

 

(Note... I did not click on the link)

 

You need enough fluid to cover the potatoes to cook them in a pot, so that's a lot of cream and a lot will have to be poured off which seems to defeat the purpose. Perhaps cooking the pots in cream in a baking dish, as in making potatoes dauphinoise, and then mashing them would work (but might be weird)...or SVing them in cream.

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11 minutes ago, gfweb said:

 

(

 

 Perhaps cooking the pots in cream in a baking dish, as in making potatoes dauphinoise, and then mashing them would work...

 

That's close to how I learned to make mashed sweet potatoes (from CI)...

Potatoes in a pot with cream and butter and seasoning, and simmer til done, then mash.  VERY easy and good; I like them this way better than baked.

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2 hours ago, lindag said:

 

That's close to how I learned to make mashed sweet potatoes (from CI)...

Potatoes in a pot with cream and butter and seasoning, and simmer til done, then mash.  VERY easy and good; I like them this way better than baked.

How much cream does it take?

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Posted (edited)
  1. 4. tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
  1. 2
  1. tablespoons heavy cream
  1. ½
  1. teaspoon table salt
  1. 1
  1. teaspoon granulated sugar
  1. 2
  1. pounds sweet potatoes (about 2 large or 3 medium-small potatoes), peeled, quartered lengthwise, and cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices
  1.  
  1. pinch ground black pepper

Edited by lindag (log)
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On 8/13/2017 at 7:06 AM, gfweb said:

 

(Note... I did not click on the link)

 

You need enough fluid to cover the potatoes to cook them in a pot, so that's a lot of cream and a lot will have to be poured off which seems to defeat the purpose. Perhaps cooking the pots in cream in a baking dish, as in making potatoes dauphinoise, and then mashing them would work (but might be weird)...or SVing them in cream.

You bring up a good point. That's a heck of a lot of cream to cook the potatoes in. I think the chef that was quoted in the article was talking about what he does at his restaurant where they would have seemingly infinite resources. I don't think anyone would be able to do this at home. Who can afford that much cream and butter to cook the potatoes in? And then you wouldn't be able to use all of it to make your potatoes with unless you're making potato soup. ;)

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5 hours ago, Toliver said:

You bring up a good point. That's a heck of a lot of cream to cook the potatoes in. I think the chef that was quoted in the article was talking about what he does at his restaurant where they would have seemingly infinite resources. I don't think anyone would be able to do this at home. Who can afford that much cream and butter to cook the potatoes in? And then you wouldn't be able to use all of it to make your potatoes with unless you're making potato soup. ;)

 

If you cook potatoes in a pressure cooker, you only need enough milk to bring the pot up to pressure, not enough to cover the potatoes. So, as in the recipe Anna linked to, it's possible to cook them with just enough cream or milk and butter to mash when they're done. But if you don't have a pressure cooker and you're concerned about losing flavor to the cooking water, why not just steam the potatoes?

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So I did it. I cut up yukon golds in small pieces and put them in a sauce pan and added enough heavy cream to just short of cover them. And salt.

 

Cooked for 17 minutes and mashed.

 

The result was silkier and much deeper flavored than anything I've made in the past (photo on dinner thread). 

 

I didn't measure the cream, but it was about what I'd end up using when cooking the traditional way.  Given the enhanced texture (probably from retaining the potato starch) I think some milk could be subbed for some of the cream (but I have no intention of doing that).

 

I think this is the new standard MP for me.

 

There may be problems scaling this up for large volumes of mashed pots. I suspect that a big pot filled with potatoes might have trouble cooking all evenly with a small volume of liquid.

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8 hours ago, gfweb said:

So I did it. I cut up yukon golds in small pieces and put them in a sauce pan and added enough heavy cream to just short of cover them. And salt.

 

Cooked for 17 minutes and mashed.

 

The result was silkier and much deeper flavored than anything I've made in the past (photo on dinner thread). 

 

I didn't measure the cream, but it was about what I'd end up using when cooking the traditional way.  Given the enhanced texture (probably from retaining the potato starch) I think some milk could be subbed for some of the cream (but I have no intention of doing that).

 

I think this is the new standard MP for me.

 

There may be problems scaling this up for large volumes of mashed pots. I suspect that a big pot filled with potatoes might have trouble cooking all evenly with a small volume of liquid.

 

Interesting.  Did you leave them chunky on purpose, or is that an effect of cooking them in the cream?

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2 hours ago, jmacnaughtan said:

 

Interesting.  Did you leave them chunky on purpose, or is that an effect of cooking them in the cream?

 

They were a little chunky. Something about the process made them harder to mash thoroughly. It may have been that the smaller chunks that I started with fit  through the holes in the masher. I wondered about it

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22 hours ago, gfweb said:

 

They were a little chunky. Something about the process made them harder to mash thoroughly. It may have been that the smaller chunks that I started with fit  through the holes in the masher. I wondered about it

 

Hmmm.  It may be something about the calcium in the cream acting on the pectin in the potatoes.  If, in fact, potatoes contain any pectin.

 

Maybe the lower water content affected the heat being transferred, as well. 

 

Would you try cooking them for longer next time?

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3 hours ago, jmacnaughtan said:

 

Hmmm.  It may be something about the calcium in the cream acting on the pectin in the potatoes.  If, in fact, potatoes contain any pectin.

 

Maybe the lower water content affected the heat being transferred, as well. 

 

Would you try cooking them for longer next time?

Good thoughts.   Potatoes do have pectin.

I tried again last night ...cooked 20 minutes. Still a little chunky even with a more vigorous mashing.  There is something going on here.

 

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14 minutes ago, gfweb said:

Good thoughts.   Potatoes do have pectin.

I tried again last night ...cooked 20 minutes. Still a little chunky even with a more vigorous mashing.  There is something going on here.

 

 

If it is to do with the calcium, you may have to cook them for a lot longer.  Here, the water is really hard, so I end up simmering potatoes for a long time.  My mashed potatoes were no good at all until I started properly cooking them for at least 30-45 minutes, until I can no longer pick them up by spearing them with a knife.


Edited by jmacnaughtan (log)

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High pH destabilizes pectin and is a trick I've used to soften-up potatoes. Perhaps alkalinizing the cream with some bicarb  will counteract the Ca++ effect.  It might help your boiling time in Paris as well.

 

Experiments to follow....

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41 minutes ago, gfweb said:

High pH destabilizes pectin and is a trick I've used to soften-up potatoes. Perhaps alkalinizing the cream with some bicarb  will counteract the Ca++ effect.  It might help your boiling time in Paris as well.

 

Experiments to follow....

Here is a method from Tyler Florence  that seems to get good reviews.   I am not sure that it is what you are after though. 

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So I compared water boiled Yukon gold to cream boiled Yukon gold. 

 

The water mashed weren't a bit lumpy. The cream mashed looked as lumpy as previous photos but on close examination the lumps were mashed well mostly but they retained the shape of the masher extruded potato.  I guess the way to put it is that they were more cohesive.  Odd. 

 

When i smeared out both samples there were little bits of unmashed potato...perhaps a little larger in the cream cooked batch...but still little.  I think it's mostly an illusion of chunks. 

 

After about five batches,now I'm less enamoured. They are still tasty, but way too rich to put a big blob on a plate as I'm accustomed to doing. I think the restaurant sized portion would be about right. A tablespoon or two served under a piece of fish would be great.  And they are fatty enough to stand up to a sauce without turning into porridge. 

 

They are kind of like mashed potatoes au gratin and need to be deployed conservatively. 

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