Saturday, November 3, 2012

Julia's Garlic Mashed Potatoes Revisited

From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...Longtime readers of my blog know that I grew up in an ethnically diverse neighborhood and was taught to cook by several of the women who lived on our block. One of the wonders of my childhood was the technique used by Mrs. P, our Swedish neighbor, to make her holiday potatoes. Back in the day, boiled potatoes were an everyday affair but the mashed variety appeared only on Sunday's or special occasions. I can still remember Mrs. P, standing coatless on the porch, shaking the daylights out of a pot of steaming potatoes on one of those frigid winter holidays that are so common in Chicago. It was a technique she had learned from her mother and while she had never questioned why it was done, she knew that drier potatoes were more mealy and made a better mash. She was right. To this day, I find a scoop of good mashed potatoes irresistible and I blame her for my potato addiction and the extra heft they put on my hips during the holidays. I made her potatoes for several years after the Silver Fox and I were married but then Julia Child and her garlic mashed potatoes appeared on the scene. Julia's potatoes, which were drop dead delicious and used a technique similar to the one favored by Mrs. P, became my standard until common sense intervened and I called a halt to the use of such copious amounts of butter and cream in my kitchen. The recipe I'm featuring today is a scaled back version of Julia's potatoes and they are not half bad. If you're watching calories this holiday season, but still want to serve mashed potatoes, you might want to give them a try. Here's the recipe.

Garlic Mashed Potatoes
...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite inspired by Julia Child

Garlic Infused Milk
30 cloves of peeled garlic
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons chicken broth or water
1 cup whole milk
1/4 teaspoon salt
Pinch of white pepper
2-1/2 lbs baking potatoes, peeled and quartered
2 tablespoons softened butter
White pepper
1/4 cup whole milk
4 tablespoons minced parsley


1) To make garlic infused milk: Melt butter in small heavy-bottom saucepan and add chicken broth and garlic. Cover pan and cook slowly for 20 to 30 minutes, or until garlic is very soft but not brown. Stir in milk, salt, and pepper. Return to heat and simmer for 20 minutes longer, stirring occasionally. Press through a sieve or puree in a food processor. Set aside.
2) To make potatoes: Boil or microwave potatoes until soft, then drain and put through a potato ricer or food mill. Return potatoes to pan and stir over low heat for a few minutes to evaporate some of the excess moisture. When potatoes begin to film bottom of pan, remove from heat and beat in butter. Add salt and pepper to taste. Beat in infused milk with a wooden spoon. Add remaining milk by spoonfuls until desired consistency is reached. Fold in parsley and serve. Yield: 6 to 8 servings.

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Pondside said...

The Great Dane has always done as his mother did - he shakes the potatoes in the pot after the water is drained from them!

Restaurant in kuwait said...

very nice post and shakes the potatoes in the pot after the water is drained from them!

Alicia Foodycat said...

They look really good! And less copious butter is such a good idea for all of us (I used a calorie-counting website yesterday and was HORRIFIED with the outcome!)

I also really appreciate your subtle little prods for people to vote! The Presidential elections have such an impact on the whole world, so it needs a good turn out to make it the most democratic possible decision!

Angie's Recipes said...

It looks really smooth and great!

SImple and Serene Living said...

Garlic mashed potatoes are my favorite. I will remember to shake an extra amount from now on.


tender b. said...

I've always thought mashed potatoes are what you make of them. Copious amounts of butter or not, you decide. I love that these include broth and 30 (!) cloves of garlic.

Anonymous said...

I'm sure these are incredibly creamy and full of flavor. I will have to try it with veggie broth!

Tanna said...

These sound fabulous... but, I do so miss the days we used copious amounts of butter and cream with total abandon! Now, the guilt almost takes away all the fun of eating it when I yield to temptation... this will help. ;) blessings ~ tanna

Unknown said...

Wow, 30 cloves of garlic! That's amazing! I will try this one for sure!

Big Dude said...

What "The Café Sucré Farine" said

cocoa and coconut said...

Garlic and potato is a classic combo!

David said...

Mary, We don't eat mashed potatoes very ofter...or potatoes in any fashion for that matter. However, when we do go for's butter and cream...or eat some veggies instead. At least we skip the gravy! Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

Eileen said...

These sound good. I am a mashed potato lover; it's one of those things people always ask me to make because mine are so good. Alas, they are not good for you and therefore only really suitable for an occasional indulgence. :)

Sprigs of Rosemary said...

Mashed potatoes are a welcome treat around here, but they are always on the Thanksgiving table. I love the idea of garlic infused milk. Why haven't I ever paid attention to this technique before? Thanks, Mary . . and for the scaling down part, especially!

Joanne said...

The only thing that could make mashed potatoes even better is a garlic infusion! These sound great!

Panchali said...

Wow...this looks delicious!am going to make this...soon!:)

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