"Discover Cooking, Discuss Life."

Go Back   Discuss Cooking - Cooking Forums > Recipes & Ingredients > Vegetables
Click Here to Login
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 11-28-2012, 02:04 PM   #1
Certified/Certifiable
 
Chief Longwind Of The North's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: USA,Michigan
Posts: 10,674
Perfect mashed potatoes

I'm looking for the perfect mashed potato. Russets are fluffy, but can be coarse in texture. White & red rose spuds can be waxy/heavy. are great, but lack that earthy russet flavor.

I'm thinking that potato varieties might be mashed together to balance the texture and flavors.

ha anyone done this and come up with the perfect mashed potato?

Seeeeeeya; Chief Longwind of the North

__________________
“No amount of success outside the home can compensate for failure within the home…"

Check out my blog for the friendliest cooking instruction on the net. Go ahead. You know you want to.- https://gwnorthsfamilycookin.wordpress.com/
Chief Longwind Of The North is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2012, 02:13 PM   #2
Sous Chef
 
SharonT's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Memphis, TN
Posts: 519
I like Yukon Gold potatoes for mashing. Mixing those with Russets... good idea!
__________________
Sharon
SharonT is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2012, 02:46 PM   #3
Head Chef
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: USA,Florida
Posts: 2,417
I think you are on to something, mixing the two. i have always used russets, don't over cook the. I put garlic cloves and onions in with them and then put them through a ricer. Perfect for us, at least.
__________________
I can resist anything, but temptation. Oscar Wilde
lyndalou is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2012, 03:25 PM   #4
Master Chef
 
CharlieD's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: USA,Minnesota
Posts: 9,588
Not sure about "perect" potato, (sorry could not help myself), but I do make perfect mashed potato.

I like Yukon Gold, but will use any white potato, my second choice is baking potato from COSTCO, but not from Sam’s. First and the most important rule of thumb when boiling potato put as little water as possible. The water should barely cover the potatoes, not even completely. Potato hates water. Peel the potatoes, for G-ds sake do not make mashed potato with skin on, brrrrr, dice or quarter it, you do not want too big of a chunk, you want potato to cook fast and evenly, the longer potato is in the water the harder it will be. Put potatoes into cold water add salt, to taste, I usually make 4 quart pot of mashed potatoes, we love leftovers, for that much potatoes I add 1 small to a medium onion, leave the tale and the bottom intact so you can discard at the end, 7-10 cloves garlic and 1 tea spoon full with beef soup mix or if I have stock or soup either beef or chicken I add that, but then you should add less water.
Boil potato till soft, drain and save the water from potato, discard onion and garlic. Add I stick of margarine (or butter) to the pot cover it and shake it really well so all the potato gets covered with it. I use hand mixer, recommend everybody do the same, unless you like lumps (another brrrrr) in your potatoes. Whip the potato and then gradually add the reserved water to get perfect consistency, you’ll have to figure out what it is for you, but not too much. This is actually is a good time to add salt if you did not put enough originally. Add salt to water dissolve and then add to potato. Note: Doesn’t work in reverse. Serve immediately, or if you need to keep it warm wrap the pot in a newspaper and then in the big bath towel. It will keep warm for a long time like that. You’ll love it.
__________________
You are what you eat.
CharlieD is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2012, 03:33 PM   #5
Head Chef
 
GLC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Near Austin, Texas
Posts: 1,216
First, i's useful to know how each variety performs when properly cooked for mashing. The key piece of information is that the starch packets in potatoes will, unless properly prepared for it, rupture at high temperature, releasing the starches and making them gummy.

The fix is that these starch packets will stabilize if heated not much more than 165F and cooled. Heat the water to a stable 175F, and add the sliced potatoes, bringing he temperature down to about 165F and holding them there for 20-30 miunutes before cooling in cold water.

They can now be heated to boiling water temperature with the starch modules intact.

All of this can be spoiled by overworking them in mashing. It can be done with a ricer or food mill. Both are more gentle than a potato masher. Oddly, it is this starch structure that means Russets are good for mashing. Reds have low starch and are almost always gluey, for the same reason that they are good salad potatoes because they hold their shape.

So, if you're going to experiment with reds in mashed, the Russets have to be carefully handles so that their starches down break out and aggravate the sticky tendencies of the reds.

Now none of the means reds can't be good "smashed," partially mashed, with cream added. And it dangerous to make broad statements any more, since development of altered varieties is always ongoing, and characteristics change.
__________________
"Kitchen duty is awarded only to those of manifest excellence..." - The Master, Dogen
GLC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2012, 03:39 PM   #6
Executive Chef
 
salt and pepper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Montana
Posts: 2,737
The best potatoes for mashing or pureeing, are waxy yellow,Idaho bakers, and russets due to the low moisture and high starch content. And as Lyndaou states, using a ricer before you blend them. I also like to use heavy cream instead of milk,and softened butter. Its also a good idea to place in a hot oven until the steam has escaped.
salt and pepper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2012, 03:53 PM   #7
Half Baked
 
4meandthem's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Bay Area California
Posts: 2,018
For the perfect mashed pototo just smother them in gravy.
__________________
Just be yourself! Everyone else is taken.

My Flickr stuff!
https://www.flickr.com/photos/e_maxwell_photography/
4meandthem is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2012, 03:53 PM   #8
Chef Extraordinaire
 
pacanis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: NW PA
Posts: 18,751
I'm a big believer in technique over the actual potato used, though redskins will be heavier like mentioned. I always use a hand masher. Mash, lift... mash lift... maybe a swirl or two around the pot to collect anything you missed, but not too many swirls or else you will have whipped potatoes. They will have the consistency of warm pudding if you swirl the masher around like a mixer. IMO nothing makes a fluffier potato than a hand masher (no lumps if done correctly, though not for the feeble). The lifting action aerates them or something. It makes them fluffier anyway.
__________________
Give us this day our daily bacon.
pacanis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2012, 04:50 PM   #9
Executive Chef
 
Whiskadoodle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Twin Cities Mn
Posts: 3,973
I am increasingly leery of Restaurant "Garlic Mashed Potatoes". It seems this is all that is served Everywhere. My theory is they are made in some big Vat somewhere and delivered for re-heating on premises.
--

S & P rec's putting them in the oven to release steam is a good idea. I usually drain them and place back on the burner and bounce the kettle around and watch the steam evaporate. It;s amazing how much water is still contained.

Lately I have been stirring in sour cream with soft butter, no milk. Mostly because I bought a huge container of sour cream. Pretty good.

I use all purpose Idahos and hand mash like Pac's technique. I rice them first if I make a lot of potatoes. Never use an electric mixer on my potatoes !!
Whiskadoodle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2012, 06:00 PM   #10
Chef Extraordinaire
 
taxlady's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: near Montreal, Quebec
Posts: 24,718
Send a message via Skype™ to taxlady
Quote:
Originally Posted by pacanis View Post
I'm a big believer in technique over the actual potato used, though redskins will be heavier like mentioned. I always use a hand masher. Mash, lift... mash lift... maybe a swirl or two around the pot to collect anything you missed, but not too many swirls or else you will have whipped potatoes. They will have the consistency of warm pudding if you swirl the masher around like a mixer. IMO nothing makes a fluffier potato than a hand masher (no lumps if done correctly, though not for the feeble). The lifting action aerates them or something. It makes them fluffier anyway.
That's how I do mine too. I find that it matters what kind of hand masher one uses, particularly for how much effort it will take.
__________________
May you live as long as you wish and love as long as you live.
Robert A. Heinlein
taxlady is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2012, 07:10 PM   #11
Master Chef
 
Rocklobster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Ottawa Valley, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 6,543
A pinch of white pepper....
Rocklobster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2012, 09:57 PM   #12
Senior Cook
 
Vanitas's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: British Columbia
Posts: 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiskadoodle View Post
Lately I have been stirring in sour cream with soft butter, no milk. Mostly because I bought a huge container of sour cream. Pretty good.
Oh yum! I will have to try that next time.

I use any spud available. Boil them peeled & cubed, use the hand masher while adding warm milk mixed with melted butter. Usually season with garlic, basil, dill & a little pinch of chili powder. And then proceed to devour them like my life depends on it, not giving myself enough time to ponder the difference in taste between various potato varieties.

In the end I think it comes down to technique more than potato type. I've had different types of potatoes in various restaurants and they all can be amazing.
__________________
"The only way of understanding the limits of the possible is to venture a little way past them into the impossible." -Arthur C. Clarke
Vanitas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2012, 06:07 AM   #13
Chef Extraordinaire
 
pacanis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: NW PA
Posts: 18,751
I usually just use milk and butter in my mashed potaoes. I've tried sour cream, cream cheese, various other flavorings, but always come back to the way my mother and her mother before her made them.
We like flavoring our mashed potatoes with gravy
__________________
Give us this day our daily bacon.
pacanis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2012, 06:35 AM   #14
Executive Chef
 
Whiskadoodle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Twin Cities Mn
Posts: 3,973
+ 3 for gravy. Good Gravy. I know Chief is looking for a more perfect texture or flavor. I don't have that discerning palatte. I don't prefer too lumpy, too smooth, too gluey, and as Charlie D goes no skins. "Brrrr" must have sent a chill up his back

I can handle the skin on mashed, and a few lumps, at least they are real. I didn't say I turn up my nose at garlic mashed taters in restaurants, just that they are so prevalent on menus.

One thing I like to do at home is if serving corn or peas, combine a little of the vegetable per forkful of potato. Both are a good combo for me anyway.
Whiskadoodle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2012, 08:18 AM   #15
Chef Extraordinaire
 
CWS4322's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Rural Ottawa, Ontario
Posts: 13,466
I heat the milk and add the butter to that. I often use 1/2 milk, 1/2 buttermilk. If you want no lumps, use a ricer instead of a masher. I use a square masher. I tend to like some lumps. I also like Kennebecs for mashed potatoes...but often have both Kennebecs and Norlands (a red potato) mixed together.
__________________
I've got OCD--Obsessive Chicken Disorder!
https://www.discusscooking.com/forums...les-76125.html
CWS4322 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2012, 10:33 AM   #16
Sous Chef
 
menumaker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: South West France
Posts: 595
The varieties here are different to the ones stated so I guess you just have to learn which are best for you as long as they arn't the salad type, then I add a dash of cream or full milk with my margarine and a sprinkling of celery seed ( which is the magic ingredient) fine salt and WHITE pepper.
I don't like garlic in my mash either Whiskadoodle
__________________
Celtic cook

Life is like good wine.......best taken with friends x
menumaker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2012, 12:28 PM   #17
Chef Extraordinaire
 
taxlady's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: near Montreal, Quebec
Posts: 24,718
Send a message via Skype™ to taxlady
I often make mashed potatoes with just the "potato water", no milk. I have tried adding butter, but I feel that I taste the butter more if I add it at the time of eating. Using the potato water is a trick worth knowing if you know anyone who is lactose intolerant.
__________________
May you live as long as you wish and love as long as you live.
Robert A. Heinlein
taxlady is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2012, 12:38 PM   #18
Certified Pretend Chef
 
Andy M.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Massachusetts
Posts: 47,232
Peel and cut up russets, boil until cooked, drain, rice into the pan over heat. Add butter and cream or sour cream, salt and pepper. Mix just enough to combine.

I occasionally add some Parm Reg. or other cheese after ricing.
__________________
"If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe." -Carl Sagan
Andy M. is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2012, 12:48 PM   #19
Chef Extraordinaire
 
Kayelle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: south central coast/California
Posts: 14,765
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M. View Post
Peel and cut up russets, boil until cooked, drain, rice into the pan over heat. Add butter and cream or sour cream, salt and pepper. Mix just enough to combine.

I occasionally add some Parm Reg. or other cheese after ricing.
+1
If you've never used a ricer you've missed out on the perfect "unmashed" potatoes. Perfection!
__________________
Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but rather by the moments that take our breath away.

Kayelle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-29-2012, 01:32 PM   #20
Certified/Certifiable
 
Chief Longwind Of The North's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: USA,Michigan
Posts: 10,674
Thanks everyone. When using my ricer (spaetsla) maker, I sometimes were the potatoes just riced, with butter, That's yummy too. I was looking for the perfect texture, and wondering if a combination of varieties might give me something better than any single variety. After what you've said, and with a little research on my part, it seems that russets, or ther starchy potatoes along that line are the preferred potato, although many swear by Yukon Gold, or Michigold, as they contain more starch than white or red rose postatoes, but not as much as a russet, plus have that beautiful color, and buttery overtones.

My MIL used evaporated milk in her smashed spuds, while my own mother used milk.

It seems key that you want to be gentle with the cooked potato, and mash with the help of a ricer, or manual masher, as that leaves the starch packets intact an prevents the end product from becoming pasty. Also, I read from several online sources that steaming the potato produces superior texture. I know from experience that baked potatoes give the mashed potatoes maximum potato flavor.

Here's a trick I sometimes use that makes delicious smashed spuds and an interesting presentation at the same time. I bake medium to large sized russets until the skin is a touch dry. Slice them in half, perpendicular to the length of the potato, and while still too hot to handle, grasp one half with a hot pad, and turn it on its end. I then use a fork to stab the potato flesh thoroughly. Add a tsp. of butter on top and stab that into the potato, taking care not to pierce the skin. After the butter is worked in, add a small splash of milk, again working it into the potato by stabbing with the fork.

Granted, this is labor intensive mashed potato making, but it makes a wonderful smashed spud that is full flavored, and slightly rustic. And, it's a great presentation, like a twice baked potato, but better flavor. And. it will give you the best mashed potatoes you can get at a restaurant.

Again, thanks. Now I just have to make some smashed spuds, using what I've learned.

Yeh, I'm a bit extreme. But doesn't that define passionate cooking?

Seeeeeeeya; Chief Longwind of the North
__________________
“No amount of success outside the home can compensate for failure within the home…"

Check out my blog for the friendliest cooking instruction on the net. Go ahead. You know you want to.- https://gwnorthsfamilycookin.wordpress.com/
Chief Longwind Of The North is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
other, potatoes

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:59 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.