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'Spuddy marvellous': How to turn potatoes from side dish to superhero

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'Spuddy marvellous': How to turn potatoes from side dish to superhero

TAFE NSW Wagga Wagga cooking guru Sara Morley with ABC Riverina's Simon Wallace.

14 November, 2019

Mashed, smashed, roasted, fried or sliced into a salad, the potato is almost too delicious to be a vegetable.

And if you’re keen to elevate the potato from mere side dish to superhero, TAFE NSW Wagga Wagga’s resident epicurean Sara Morley has some “spuddy marvellous” advice.

In this week’s TAFE Buds segment on ABC Riverina Mornings with Simon Wallace, Sara shared some chef’s-only hints on making your roast potatoes uber-crunchy, your mashed potato criminally creamy and your potato salad a dinner party sensation.

If you'd like to take your cooking game to the next level, TAFE NSW offers a range of courses – visit https://www.tafensw.edu.au/courses/cookery-and-wine-courses or call 131 601.

 

Potato recipes by Sara Morley

Creamy Mash

Ingredients

  • 1kg starchy potatoes
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 100g cold butter, cut into cubes
  • Milk

Method

Peel potatoes and cut into even size pieces. Place in a large pot of salted cold water. Place over high heat until the water comes to a boil

Boil the potatoes for about 10-12 minutes until a knife inserted in the middle of a potato goes in with almost no resistance.  Carefully drain out all of the water.

Return the potatoes to the pan over low heat until they are very dry.

Press potatoes through a ricer, or mask with a potato masher.

Once mashed, add the cold butter and mix well with a wooden spoon.

Add enough milk to get to the desired consistency.

Whisk lightly with a balloon.

Hints

Avoid waterlogging the potatoes by:

* Baking the potatoes whole in the oven rather than boiling, then peel whilst hot before mashing.

* If you do to boil them, cut the potatoes into medium even sized pieces. Large, whole potatoes cook unevenly and small pieces will absorb too much water

* Don’t overcook. As soon as a knife can be inserted with minimal resistance, they’re ready to go.

* Pan ‘dry’ after boiling.  Immediately after the potatoes have been drained, return them to the hot stockpot, and place it back on the hot burner over low heat. 

* Don’t overmix or use a beater or food processor as it will activate the starch and make the mash gluey.

* Use a potato ricer or mouli, or if you don’t have one, a handheld masher. Potato mashers with round holes work the best because they mimic the effect of a potato ricer.  

* For extra smoothness, push through a fine sieve after using the ricer.

* Whisk at the end to make the mash light and fluffy.

 

Crunchy Roast Potatoes

Ingredients

  • 1kg all-purpose potatoes
  • 75mls olive oil (or duck fat!)

Method

Preheat oven to 200°C fan-forced.

Peel potatoes and cut into even size pieces. Place in a large pot of salted cold water. Place over high heat until the water comes to a boil.

Boil the potatoes for about 5 minutes to par-cook. Carefully drain out all of the water. Return the potatoes to the pan over low heat until they are dry.

Shake saucepan vigorously to rough up surface of potatoes. Season well.

Pour oil into a large shallow roasting tray. Place tray into oven for 5 minutes or until oil is hot. Add potatoes to hot oil. Use tongs to turn potatoes to coat in oil, then return to oven.

Roast potatoes for 30 minutes. Turn and roast for a further 30 minutes or until golden and crisp.

Serve immediately.

Hints

* Dry potatoes well after par-boiling.

* Rough the potatoes up.

* Season before roasting

* Don’t turn the potatoes too often when roasting.

* Don’t overcrowd the tray.

* Use a tray with low sides to allow good air flow.

Simple Warm Potato Salad  

Ingredients

  • 1kg waxy potatoes, halved lengthwise
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoon seeded mustard
  • 1 red onion, sliced thinly
  • 1 cup loosely packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped roughly

Method

Boil or steam or potato until just tender; drain.

Whisk oil, juice and mustard in large bowl, add potatoes, onion and parsley; toss to combine.

Serve warm.