It’s one of cooking’s truisms that the simplest things are sometimes to toughest to get just right. Proof: Simple pancakes, banana bread and guacamole are consistently the top 3 searched-for recipes. Here’s another: Mashed potatoes.
To me, there are three key moments in any mashed potato life journey (and you might be surprised that one of them isn’t adding cream or butter!):
- Potato choice: I always use Yukon Gold potatoes. Sometimes called “yellow potatoes” at the grocery store. They are my go-to, all-purpose potato. I use them for everything.
- Salt: The cooking water must be generously seasoned. Remember pasta cooking water? Make the cooking water taste salty.
- Gear: I rarely endorse a single-job tools. My beloved garlic press is one, and a potato ricer is another. It activates the potato’s starch while simultaneously aerating the mixture. Totally worth the purchase.
And that’s it! Sure, you can add cream, butter, truffle salt, roasted garlic to the mash, but at its simplest, this recipe is delicious, creamy, and silky-smooth. For many more mashed spud tips and ideas, watch this episode of the 20-Minute Cooking School.
- 8 medium Yukon Gold potatoes
- ¼ cup butter or milk (or both or neither)
- Peel the potatoes, cut each one in half and place in a large pot. Cover with lots of cold water and season with about 1 tsp table salt. Bring to a boil, then educe the heat, cover and simmer 20 min or until very tender.
- Pass each potato through a ricer and into a warmed serving bowl. Mix in butter or milk then taste for salt.
- To make these in advance, use a microwave-friendly serving bowl. Mash the potatoes up to 12 hours in advance, keep chilled, then reheat in the microwave, stirring often, until exceedingly hot. No one likes lukewarm mash.
PS: My no-fail, amazing banana bread will be in Uncomplicated!
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