Author Topic: S/O Proud kitchen moments -- Kitchen disasters  (Read 32970 times)

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emwithme

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Re: S/O Proud kitchen moments -- Kitchen disasters
« Reply #285 on: June 10, 2013, 05:07:19 PM »
This evening's mashed potatoes were more like glue than potatoes. I think I'll give up on mashed potatoes I never get them right.

Awww! Don't give up! Home made mashed potatoes are soooo much better than boxed-mixes.

I'm in the UK so boxed mixes aren't really used over here (we used to have Smash but I don't think you can even still buy that).  Thanks for the tips but it's going to be a while before I get over that particular disaster, I don't think DH will be asking for mash anytime soon either given the mess the kitchen ended up in.

OK, so UK based mashed potato advice coming up:

Buy maris piper or King Edward potatoes as a preference (Eddies also roast well), but at a pinch any supermarket bag of white potatoes will do. 

Peel your potatoes and chop into "reasonable" sized pieces - about the same size as a plum is good.  This tends to be eighths for bigger potatoes and quarters for smaller potatoes.  Allow about ten chunks of potato per person (unless they're mashed-potato-aholics like my DH and I, when you increase by at least twice!).  Put into cold water and (as above) rinse rinse rinse. 

Take a saucepan that gives the potatoes enough room to move about - my favourite mashed potato pan has a diameter that is the same size as the gap between my elbow and wrist (it takes 2 US quarts, according to the scale inside it!) (sorry, I can't put my hand on a measuring device at the moment) and put the potatoes in with enough COLD water to cover them by about a centimetre.  This will probably be level with the handle on the pan.  Add a little salt to the water if you want to.  (This is not essential and I usually leave it out).

Put the pan on a high heat until the potatoes start to boil.  This will take about ten minutes or so.  Once you've got a nice rolling boil, put a lid on the pan and turn the heat down to halfway.  Cook the potatoes for a further fifteen minutes or so.

At this point, the potatoes should fall off a fork if pronged.  If they don't, put the lid back on and re-check every minute or so. 

Drain the potatoes.

Mash them roughly (I use a ricer as it's easier with my disabilities but a hand masher works fine if you have the stamina), and add a big splash of milk.  Mix this in with a wooden spoon.  Add a couple of big curls of butter.  Mix again with the wooden spoon.  At this point, you should have a nice smooth, creamy mashed potato.  At this point, add ground black pepper if you want to. 

You can buy Smash (in Morrisons, where I shop, it's in the bit next to the oxo cubes) still - it's definitely improved since the bad old "smash martian" days.

Snooks

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Re: S/O Proud kitchen moments -- Kitchen disasters
« Reply #286 on: June 10, 2013, 05:41:18 PM »
I did almost exactly what you recommended with one minor difference.  I whipped the potatoes using an electric whisk because neither one of us can mash potatoes without lumps.  They were standard white potatoes.

Thipu1

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Re: S/O Proud kitchen moments -- Kitchen disasters
« Reply #287 on: June 11, 2013, 11:18:58 AM »
We learned a tip years ago that has helped our mashed potatoes a lot. 

Make sure that the milk is warm before it's added to the potatoes.  That stops a lot of the gluiness.  Also, do not over whip.  To our mind, potatoes should retain at least a bit of texture.  Frankly, we like ours with bits of skin.   

ladyknight1

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Re: S/O Proud kitchen moments -- Kitchen disasters
« Reply #288 on: June 11, 2013, 11:22:37 AM »
If you mix the cooked potato with the melted butter first, the butter coats the starch molecules and helps keep them from becoming gluey when the dairy is added. I learned that from America's Test Kitchen over a decade ago, and it has served me well.

Specky

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Re: S/O Proud kitchen moments -- Kitchen disasters
« Reply #289 on: June 11, 2013, 11:48:29 AM »
Turd bread.

Made a loaf of bread yesterday in the bread machine using freshly ground spelt berries, so some extra effort and glorious expectations.  This is not the first time, and this recipe has worked before.  My yeast must have been dead, though it was within dates.  What I wound up with was a collection of nuggets that look like animal poops.  My kids and DH say it tastes great, though.  Wish I could post a picture.

Dazi

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Re: S/O Proud kitchen moments -- Kitchen disasters
« Reply #290 on: June 11, 2013, 05:23:31 PM »
I did almost exactly what you recommended with one minor difference.  I whipped the potatoes using an electric whisk because neither one of us can mash potatoes without lumps.  They were standard white potatoes.

Electric mixer=glue potatoes

Maybe not all the time, but IME, a lot of the time.  If you must use an electric mixer, stir in the butter and some of the milk by hand with a big wooden spoon FIRST, then use the mixer on LOW ONLY for no more than about a minute.
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turtleIScream

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Re: S/O Proud kitchen moments -- Kitchen disasters
« Reply #291 on: June 11, 2013, 05:28:11 PM »
My garlic paste...isn't. For some reason, my tried and proven recipe didn't work, and I just have a runny garlicky, lemony mess. To make it worse, I used up my olive oil, so I can't even start over.

gramma dishes

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Re: S/O Proud kitchen moments -- Kitchen disasters
« Reply #292 on: June 11, 2013, 05:39:00 PM »
My garlic paste...isn't. For some reason, my tried and proven recipe didn't work, and I just have a runny garlicky, lemony mess. To make it worse, I used up my olive oil, so I can't even start over.

Is there any possibility that if you left it sitting open for a few minutes, enough liquid might evaporate to get it back closer to the consistency you were aiming for?

Diane AKA Traska

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Re: S/O Proud kitchen moments -- Kitchen disasters
« Reply #293 on: June 11, 2013, 07:11:22 PM »
I did almost exactly what you recommended with one minor difference.  I whipped the potatoes using an electric whisk because neither one of us can mash potatoes without lumps.  They were standard white potatoes.

Electric mixer=glue potatoes

Maybe not all the time, but IME, a lot of the time.  If you must use an electric mixer, stir in the butter and some of the milk by hand with a big wooden spoon FIRST, then use the mixer on LOW ONLY for no more than about a minute.

I have never used a potato masher or a spoon, all I've ever used is a hand mixer or a stand mixer.
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Layla Miller

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Re: S/O Proud kitchen moments -- Kitchen disasters
« Reply #294 on: June 11, 2013, 09:16:01 PM »
I did almost exactly what you recommended with one minor difference.  I whipped the potatoes using an electric whisk because neither one of us can mash potatoes without lumps.  They were standard white potatoes.

Electric mixer=glue potatoes

Maybe not all the time, but IME, a lot of the time.  If you must use an electric mixer, stir in the butter and some of the milk by hand with a big wooden spoon FIRST, then use the mixer on LOW ONLY for no more than about a minute.

I have never used a potato masher or a spoon, all I've ever used is a hand mixer or a stand mixer.

Same here.  In fact, a few weeks ago the mixer beaters were in the dishwasher, so I had to dig out the potato masher...and the mashed potatoes tasted worse than usual.  Maybe we have magic hand mixers.  :D
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Pen^2

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Re: S/O Proud kitchen moments -- Kitchen disasters
« Reply #295 on: June 11, 2013, 10:59:48 PM »
I decided to get myself a sandwich two days ago. The butter in the fridge was rock-solid (normally I let it sit on the counter a while in advance), so I thought I'd microwave it briefly. I've done this before. Unfortunately, the particular brand of butter we happened to have two days ago had aluminium in its wrapper. I didn't realise this until the fireworks started  ::)

Not my finest moment. I cleaned it all up, but felt like an absolute dunce. The butter was taken out of the charred wrapper and is now in a microwave-safe tupperware container.

Kimblee

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Re: S/O Proud kitchen moments -- Kitchen disasters
« Reply #296 on: June 12, 2013, 01:18:47 PM »
OK, so UK based mashed potato advice coming up:

Buy maris piper or King Edward potatoes as a preference (Eddies also roast well), but at a pinch any supermarket bag of white potatoes will do. 

Peel your potatoes and chop into "reasonable" sized pieces - about the same size as a plum is good.  This tends to be eighths for bigger potatoes and quarters for smaller potatoes.  Allow about ten chunks of potato per person (unless they're mashed-potato-aholics like my DH and I, when you increase by at least twice!).  Put into cold water and (as above) rinse rinse rinse. 

Take a saucepan that gives the potatoes enough room to move about - my favourite mashed potato pan has a diameter that is the same size as the gap between my elbow and wrist (it takes 2 US quarts, according to the scale inside it!) (sorry, I can't put my hand on a measuring device at the moment) and put the potatoes in with enough COLD water to cover them by about a centimetre.  This will probably be level with the handle on the pan.  Add a little salt to the water if you want to.  (This is not essential and I usually leave it out).

Put the pan on a high heat until the potatoes start to boil.  This will take about ten minutes or so.  Once you've got a nice rolling boil, put a lid on the pan and turn the heat down to halfway.  Cook the potatoes for a further fifteen minutes or so.

At this point, the potatoes should fall off a fork if pronged.  If they don't, put the lid back on and re-check every minute or so. 

Drain the potatoes.

Mash them roughly (I use a ricer as it's easier with my disabilities but a hand masher works fine if you have the stamina), and add a big splash of milk.  Mix this in with a wooden spoon.  Add a couple of big curls of butter.  Mix again with the wooden spoon.  At this point, you should have a nice smooth, creamy mashed potato.  At this point, add ground black pepper if you want to. 

You can buy Smash (in Morrisons, where I shop, it's in the bit next to the oxo cubes) still - it's definitely improved since the bad old "smash martian" days.

Oh the evil ricer...

Every thanksgiving my lovely stepgrandmother threw a big dinner. With riced potatoes since they are apparently a tradition with their family.

And every year, I mistoke them for rice, spooned some onto my plate, took a bite and got awful, unseasoned, unflavored in any way, potato. And had to keep from making a face. I don't eat gravy so there wasn;t even that to help it go down.

I'm still leary of anything involving the ricer.

Amara

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Re: S/O Proud kitchen moments -- Kitchen disasters
« Reply #297 on: June 12, 2013, 04:24:59 PM »
In post #268 I described the damage I had done to my Le Crueset skillet. Today I heard back from the company with this suggestion, which I thought would be good to share:

Quote
We would recommend using a laundry detergent such as tide or one that has an enzyme in it. Make a mixture of one part detergent and three parts water to fill the interior of the vessel. Allow this to boil for about 5-7 minutes. Afterwards, allow to the vessel to cool and proceed with cleaning with your dish detergent. If needed, you may use a nylon or plastic scrubby to assist. Once your item has been cleaned, lightly coat the interior with white vinegar using a soft cloth or paper towel. This step is used to return some of the sheen back to the glaze. The longer you allow the vinegar to remain on the enamel the more of the sheen it will bring. Your item can be stored away with the vinegar on it until next use. When ready to use, wash and dry.

If the enamel is damaged and you reside within the USA you may provide the number or letter located under the item to be offered a replacement at a reduced cost with the damaged item returned.

Snooks

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Re: S/O Proud kitchen moments -- Kitchen disasters
« Reply #298 on: June 12, 2013, 04:35:04 PM »
I decided to get myself a sandwich two days ago. The butter in the fridge was rock-solid (normally I let it sit on the counter a while in advance), so I thought I'd microwave it briefly. I've done this before. Unfortunately, the particular brand of butter we happened to have two days ago had aluminium in its wrapper. I didn't realise this until the fireworks started  ::)

Not my finest moment. I cleaned it all up, but felt like an absolute dunce. The butter was taken out of the charred wrapper and is now in a microwave-safe tupperware container.

I did that the first time I cooked Christmas dinner.

KimberlyM

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Re: S/O Proud kitchen moments -- Kitchen disasters
« Reply #299 on: June 12, 2013, 05:11:19 PM »
The first time I made Christmas dinner I left the turkey neck and gibblets in the turkey...didn't know they were there!