The Best Mashed Potato

Having Irish family means accepting that sometimes stereotypes are real. Potatoes for instance, I cannot remember a time when I didn’t know how to roast, mash and bake them. Sometimes you just have to embrace the fact that your mum says things in a funny way, and that potato famine jokes are hilarious.

Potatoes make any meal homely, they add a safety that is hard to beat, and it’s pretty gosh darn hard to mess them up. Just avoid the green ones.

This is one of my favorite potato recipes (others include potato farles, herb-de-provence roasted potatoes and rosemary and potato pizza) it is ridiculously simple and pairs with so many foods. This time, for example, I had a burger and some green beans that needed using up; eat while enviously watching SJP and her wonderful wardrobe in Sex and the City on a Friday night and drowning in gravy.

The Best Mashed Potato – Serves 2

Ingredients
1 Brown onion
2 Garlic Cloves
2 Small potatoes
2 Knobs of butter
Dash of Milk

Recipe

Peel onion and garlic. Slice onion in half.Grill or roast them until they are tender, you should be able to smell them.
I grill them under a high setting for about 20 minutes turning occasionally to ensure they don’t catch on fire. If you are doing a Sunday roast chuck them in with the meat and take them out about 20 minutes before you are ready to mash; this method yields incredible results.

After 20 minutes under the grill remove onions & garlic.

Roughly peel and chop potatoes into chunks and boil in salted water until tender.

Once the onion and garlic are cool chop both finely – this is easy as they are both falling apart anyway, I find it easiest to just squeeze the garlic out of it’s skin straight into the drained potatoes.

Drain the cooked potatoes and add the chopped onions and garlic, mash roughly. Add the butter to the roughly mashed mix and mash some more. Add a dash of milk, no more than a quarter of a cups worth per two potatoes and mash until creamy. Plate and season with pepper.

So Easy!

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Leek and Potato Soup

I am such a winter person, it’s almost offensive how winter I am.

I’m sorry carefree, sun-kissed, golden-haired sun goddesses. I do not function properly in the summer, I don’t know what to cook, wear or do. As soon as any sign of cold peeks its head out I start functioning like a real person in the real world again. For instance this recipe right here; just off the top of my head (based obviously on 17 years of living in the depths the icy north; aka Scotland) I just cannot think that way with salad or any kind of cold foods. My brain works well in the cold; puddings, soups, stews, roasts and layering. Also I think I study better in the cold dark weather.

I think I just came out as a yeti?

Anyway, soup is amazing.

Leek and Potato Soup

Olive Oil
1 Clove Garlic
1 Brown Onion
2 Rashers Bacon
1 Teaspoon of Thyme
1 Large Leek
1 Litre of Chicken Stock – I used Campbells Chicken stock, but If you make your own that’s pretty awesome!
5 Small Potatoes or 3 Medium
1 Tablespoon of Parmesan
Salt and Pepper to Taste

Heat olive oil in a large pot, enough to thoroughly cover the onions and soften the leeks, roughly 3 tablespoons. Dice onion and garlic and add to heated oil.

Add the bacon and thyme to the pot; keep bacon whole. Fry bacon until it is nearly crispy, then remove and place on paper towel to drain and cool.

Chop the leek roughly and wash. Add washed leek to the pot and stir until softened.

Add half of the chicken stock. Dice potatoes and add to pot.

Cover with the rest of the stock and stir.

Cover all the luscious green goodness with a lid and simmer for half an hour.

I hope you’ve read all of this in a Welsh accent; did you know leeks are the national dish of Wales?

Hopefully after that half an hour the potatoes are soft! Mash them up a bit.Add the parmesan at this point, freshly grate it!Making sure you have a deep pot so you don’t get splattered, blend the soup with an immersion blender.  I had to change pots, that’s totes cool.

Serve with chopped crispy bacon and fresh crusty bread. Ah-mazing.I’ll admit I probably didn’t invent this (read: definitely didn’t) however these are all my measurements and I did this off the top of my head.