There's no excuse for buying instant mash when delicious home made mashed potatoes are easy and inexpensive. Mashed potatoes make a great side dish or topping for a pie.
Hints and tips for making mashed potatoes:
- Leave the skin on and make what I like to call "skinny mash". Not only will it save time, effort and potato, they're better for you too as the vitamins are stored just under the skin.
- Add the potatoes to a pan of cold water and bring to the boil.
- When the potatoes are ready you will be able to pierce them easily with a knife.
- Drain the potatoes, pop the colander on top of the pan and allow them to steam dry for a couple of minutes. This will avoid a watery mash.
- Mash the potatoes in the pan over a low heat with some butter and milk. Make it as smooth or as chunky as you like. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Do not use a hand blender to mash potatoes! It breaks the potato cells releasing the starch inside. The result? A gluey sticky mess instead of a beautiful creamy mash. Rubbish.
- Leftover mashed potatoes can be frozen for later use. Leftover mash also has other clever uses - add it to stews, pies (like easy cottage pie or fantastic fish pie) or sauces to thicken them up, or mix with tinned salmon to make fish cakes.
Mashed Potatoes: Serves 4:
Time: 20 minutes start to finish
Cost: 22p per serving
Calories: 200 per serving
- 1kg potatoes
- 40g butter
- 50ml milk (plus extra)
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Peel the potatoes (if you like, I leave the skins on) and cut into even 3cm sized pieces. Place in a pan of cold, salted water. Bring to the boil then simmer for around 7 - 8 minutes or until tender. Do not over cook them.
- Drain the potatoes and allow them to steam dry for a couple of minutes. Return the potatoes to the pan and mash them over a low heat with the butter and milk and some extra flavours if you like (see below). Season to taste and add more milk if you prefer them smooth.
Mashed Potato Ideas:
Mash a few extras into the cooked mashed potatoes for a whole new set of flavours:
- Mustard Mash - Add 3 teaspoons of whole grain mustard.
- Horseradish Mash - Add 2 teaspoons of horseradish.
- Pesto Mash - Add 4 teaspoons of green pesto.
- Olive Oil Mash - Add 6 - 8 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil instead of the butter and milk.
- Herby Mash - Add a good pinch of your favourite dried herbs.
- Cheesey Mash - Add a good handful of cheddar cheese.
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