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Mashed Potatoes With Variations

This recipe for plain mashed potatoes makes the creamiest, fluffiest mashed potatoes imaginable. If possible, purchase floury potatoes especially suited for mashing – check that the other varieties are completely tender before attempting to mash them.  Be sure to try the variations listed below for an interesting take on this popular starch staple.

500 g potatoes, peeled and cubed
250 ml water
2.5 ml salt
125 ml milk
50 g butter

  1. Place the potatoes in a saucepan with the water and salt and bring to a boil.
  2. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer gently for about 30 minutes or until completely tender.
  3. Remove the lid and turn up the heat to boil dry if necessary.
  4. Mash the potatoes very well with a potato masher or fork and add the milk and butter. Cook over moderate heat to warm the milk and mash again until the mixture becomes very smooth.
  5. Add more milk if necessary to make the potatoes creamy and continue mashing until a smooth and fluffy mixture is obtained.
  6. Season with salt, pepper and nutmeg, if used, and transfer to a serving dish.  Keep warm until ready to serve.
  7. Serve piping hot with fish, red meat or chicken.

6 servings.

Recipe by Carolié de Koster from the Art Of Cooking Recipe Book p. 408.


  1. The mashed potato can be used for cottage pie.
  2. Add 15 ml each finely chopped lemon zest and fresh parsley to the potatoes.
  3. To make Baked Mashed Potato:
    • Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees celcius.
    • Add 2.5 ml baking powder and 1 large egg to the mashed potato and mix well.
    • Spoon the mashed potato mixture into an greased ovenproof dish and level the top.
    • Bake for about 20 minutes until the potato is heated through and the edges turn brown.