Christopher TestaniBon Appetit magazine
Fact: The words "lumpy" and "gluey" should not be in the mashed potato vocabulary. But it takes the right tools and technique to keep spuds from becoming a gummy, pasty mess. First, you have to ditch the masher or blender and get yourself a food mill (a ricer will work too!). Once you've done that, follow these steps below and you'll have mashed potatoes so light and airy, you'll think they were sent by the tuber gods.
Prepare your potatoes. Peel 4 pounds russet and 1 pound Yukon Gold potatoes. (These measurements are based on a recipe to serve 8-10. Click for full recipe).
Maxime IattoniStep 2
Cut into 2" pieces, adding to pot half-filled with cold water as they are cut. Stir in 3 tablespoons of kosher salt. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and gently simmer until tender, 10-15 minutes.
Maxime IattoniStep 3
Drain potatoes and transfer to a baking sheet. Let dry, 5-10 minutes.
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Maxime IattoniStep 4
Get cranking. Pass potatoes through the smallest disk of a food mill (pictured above) along with 1/2 cup (1 stick) cubed, chilled unsalted butter into a large bowl.
Maxime IattoniStep 5
For extra flavor, heat 1 cup whole milk, 1/2 cup heavy cream, 8 whole black peppercorns, 3 sprigs thyme or 1 sprig rosemary, and 2 bay leaves in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until mixture is very hot but not boiling, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let mixture infuse for 20 minutes; strain.
Maxime IattoniStep 6
Stir hot cream mixture into the mashed potatoes.
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Maxime IattoniStep 7
Continue to stir until cream is completely incorporated and potatoes are smooth.
Maxime IattoniStep 8
Season generously to taste with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Step 9Maxime Iattoni
Fold potatoes until seasoning is evenly distributed.
Maxime IattoniStep 10
At this point, the potatoes are ready to serve. If you need to keep them hot but aren't ready to serve them, press plastic wrap directly against the surface and set bowl over (not in) a large pot of simmering water for up to 2 hours.
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