My love of mashed potato dates back to my childhood, as a young vegetarian in the USA before people really started catering for veggies. Mashed potato was one of the only things I could ever eat at the buffet or in the school lunches. I loved it when it was real potato drenched in butter and cream. I loved it when it was powdered potato with a little bit of cheap margarine.
Mr. likes mashed potato too and this is one thing we can agree on, although he requires gravy or sauce with his, and I rather like to just flavour them a little and then eat them dry and really savour the stickiness.
This recipe uses garlic, cheddar cheese and smoked paprika for flavour. eg all the strong flavours I could find. They work perfectly together- feel free to mix up the amounts of each- it doesn't really matter as its not too delicate a balance. Sometimes I make it really garlicky by only cooking the garlic for a few seconds. Sometimes I throw in less paprika and more cheese. It's never gone wrong yet. Just make sure to use a strong cheddar, otherwise there is no point- a mild cheddar would be drowned out and wasted.
I use a ricer which makes things extra smooth and perfect. You could mash with a normal masher if you like. But if you take your mashed potato seriously, and I bet you do, I really recommend investing in a ricer.
makes enough for 4 as a side dish (or, ahem, 1-2 dinners)
680g / 1.5lbs potatoes
Appx 1 Tblsps extra virgin olive oil
4 to 5 cloves garlic
1 and 1/2 Tsps smoked paprika
125g / 4.4 oz strong cheddar cheese, grated
Some milk- as much as needed to get your preferred texture
Ground black pepper, to taste
Boil the potatoes until soft.
Meanwhile, lightly saute the garlic in olive oil on a low heat, until fragrant. Be very careful not to burn them. Just before you turn off the heat, add the smoked paprika and allow to cook into the oil and garlic.
Mash or rice the potatoes to your preferred consistency, before adding the garlic and smoked paprika mixture. Use a spatula to get all of the infused oil out of the pan and into the potatoes.
Add the butter, milk and cheese and stir over very low heat until melted and incorporated.
Grind in some pepper and mix through.