Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Re: Mashed potatoes

From the Omaha World-Herald:

Creamy mashed potatoes rank almost as high as turkey and pumpkin pie on the list of must-haves for Thanksgiving dinner.

They can't come from a box of dried flakes or a mystery freezer bag plunked in the microwave.

They must be fresh and mashed with butter and cream — not chicken broth and not skim milk, says Claudia Grisnik. ...

Grisnik, 60, makes the luscious style of mashed potatoes that families crave on Thanksgiving. And she gets lots of practice throughout the year.

Most days, she makes several batches to accompany meatloaf, pot roast and rib-eye steak at Taxi's Grille & Bar near 120th and Blondo Streets. She has been cooking since age 11 and working in the restaurant business for 30 years.

I agree with Ms. Grisnik's affinity for real butter and hand-mashers; however, I take issue with her insistence that heavy cream must be used to make "real" mashed potatoes.

Now, you can make mashed potatoes with cream if you want, but be warned: your taters will taste sweet ... and the sweetness will overpower the flavor of whatever "style" o' potatoes you're using.

My Granny Ruby taught me to make mashed potatoes with whole milk. (Yes, whole milk is sweet, but it's not as sweet as heavy cream.) That's how I make it to this day. I've served my mashed potatoes to hundreds of folks -- sometimes at one sitting -- and I've never heard a single complaint.

If only I could introduce Claudia Grisnik to my Granny. Her taters-must-have-cream theory would go right out the nearest f'ing door ... like a rocket.

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