Category Archives: Potatoes

CarolCooks2…In my kitchen…Mashed Potatoes…

The Potato…comes in all sizes and colours from purple, yellow, white and reds…The Potato is healthy it’s how you cook it and what you put in it or on it which can play havoc with your health and your waistline…

My mother served potatoes at every meal hardly ever rice or pasta although in later years it became more popular with the British…

She served them mashed, whole, fried, chipped, roasted or baked in their jackets…the recipe which I posted for the Boulangere Potatoes is one of my favourites and was very popular on the blog so as it is potato month I thought I would post some various ways of cooking and serving them …today we are looking at the variations of mashed potato…

I still use a potato masher and sometimes a wooden spoon to finish them off…of course, many people, restaurants and cooking shows use a potato ricer…it apparently gives smother, lump-free mash however if you apply a bit of elbow grease my mash is always smooth and creamy just like my mother used to make…

Personally if you cut your potatoes an even size then cook them in boiling salted water for about 20 minutes depending on the potatoes you are using but a knife going in smoothly tells you if they are cooked.

Potato water is the water that potatoes have been boiled in. The potatoes release their starchy goodness into the water as they are cooked. The potato water can then be used as a substitute for milk and it makes your bread deliciously moist. As well, it can be used as a thickener that is naturally gluten-free.

If you boil your potatoes in unsalted water ...there is another use which not many people know…Starchy water will spur the release of plant nutrients in the soil so it makes a great addition. … Use unsalted potato water, let it cool for a while, and then use it to water your household plants. This works because starchy water spurs the release of nutrients in the soil…I also had a friend who makes his sourdough with potato water just like his grandmother taught him…

Now we have cooked and drained our potatoes I just cover the pan with a clean tea towel it just dries them out a little before mashing as the tea towel absorbs the steam.

Butter and milk/potato water were all my mother ever used…she also never used to melt the butter and heat the milk like all the recipes today tell you…Personally, I think we all have our own way of doing our mashed potatoes, some use a food processor but be very careful as nobody likes gluey mash, some people prefer to scrub the potatoes and cook or steam them in their skins …I like doing new potato this way as then I just lightly crush them add butter and maybe some chopped chives…Delicious.

Now you have a nice pan of creamy mash let’s get down to what mashed potatoes can be used for…

Sausage, onions and mash with lovely gravy, Liver, bacon and mash with lovely gravy or shepherds pie which is made with some tasty minced meat with vegetables topped with creamy mash maybe some grated cheese and popped in the oven until golden brown…are your taste zinging yet…my hubby would be quite happy to eat one of these on a regular basis…

Mashed potato can be used as a topping for a fisherman’s or Fish pie...it can be made into potato croquettes lovely breaded little portions which are lovely with salad or with a nice piece of steamed fish with a delicious sauce.

Want to add a little extra to your mash rather than mash with potato water or milk and butter…sometimes I use a bit of cream instead of milk or mayonnaise is very nice with mashed potato don’t knock it until you have tried it…add some grated cheddar cheese and some chopped chives.

The Irish are famous for their Champ or Colcannon ...Champ is mashed potatoes with chopped spring onions (scallions) and milk. Colcannon is Champ, with the addition of cabbage and sometimes some herbs.

The word colcannon is from the Gaelic term “cal ceannann” which means white-headed cabbage…but like with all traditional recipes it can vary I have seen recipes using savoy cabbage and even kale… In Ireland, colcannon is served as a special treat with ham or Irish bacon.

My favourite recipe from my childhood was my mum’s Fish Cakes…she would cook a nice piece of white fish in milk with bay leaves, salt and pepper…Once cooked and the potato had cooled down she would flake the fish and stir it into the ready mashed potato she would add some finely chopped spring onions or parsley then shape them into patties dip them in egg and seasoned flour then let them firm up in the fridge as they can be soft then gently fry in some butter or olive oil until they are golden brown on both sides…Enjoy!

This was a treat for us and looking back I suppose it made the fish go further…but served with some salad or vegetables and a tomato sauce I loved them…You really don’t need a recipe for these just about equivalent amounts of potato to fish…I have made these with fish pieces which ofttimes the fishmonger sells or I may add a handful of grated cheese, some sweetcorn but I still prefer them plain and simple like my mum’s…my kids used to love them when they were toddlers.

What is your favourite meal made with mashed potatoes???

Thank you for dropping by I hope to see you tomorrow for Tropical Fridays xxx

 

Smorgasbord Health Column – Food Therapy – The Humble Potato by Sally Cronin

It is always a pleasure to reblog posts which talk in common sense terms…Potatoes… I love them and have always said it is how you cook them and what you load it with which is the problem…A good post from Sally outlining the benefits and how you can enjoy your potatoes healthily…#recommended read

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

As a follow on from the recent series on the Weekly Grocery Shopping List of foods that contain the nutrients the body needs I am going to repeat my series from 2017 on the health benefits of some of our most common foods.

Food therapy is a broad term for the benefits to the body of a healthy, varied and nutritional diet of fresh foods.

Most of us walk through the fresh produce departments of our supermarkets without really paying much attention to the individual fruits and vegetables. This is a great pity because the vast majority of these foods have been cultivated for thousands of years, not only for their nutritional value but also for their medicinal properties. If you eat a healthy diet you are effectively practicing preventative medicine. A robust immune system, not only attacks external opportunistic pathogens, but also works to  prevent rogue cells in the…

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