I know as a modern American I am supposed to want a giant slab of meat in the middle of my plate (meat from a cow/pig/chicken that has led an utterly appalling life, but that’s a separate point).
The thing is, I’m all about the side dishes. I think there’s something about this time of year that makes me want to eat continuously, bite after bite after bite, just feeling the warmth that comes from metabolizing food. Wow that sounds gross, but it is just how it goes. I hate winter.
Anyway, the other week I had just a serious, intense connection with mashed potatoes.
Well yes and kale. But what else is new?
My thing with mashed potatoes is that the really really good ones are basically butter and cream (or whole milk) with a token mush of vegetable.
However, I have honed some skills to make reasonably healthful ones that are dang tasty.
I like using redskin potatoes because then you can leave the skin on and thus retain fiberness, and you can also get some of that nice earthy flavor from it.
Then I get more bang for my
buck butter by putting it into a warm pan with rosemary and garlic and letting them infuse it (I also mix it for olive oil one because it’s a healthier fat and two because my Greek grandmother made some seriously intense olive oil mashed potatoes and I try to channel them).
Then add some milk, salt (even I use a good amount of salt in my mashed potatoes. It is just necessary), and pepper (obviously I use a ton of pepper cause I use a ton of pepper in everything).
And the kale, same old same delicious, steamed then tossed with lemon and olive oil.
Yes yes yes and the “entree”, the “protein”, was fish. Simple flounder, in the Bittman style from his book entitled simply Fish. Brushed with an olive oil-dijon-sugar-herb glaze. Broiled.
One fish two veg! (We’re doing a Dr. Seuss thing at work tomorrow and it’s clearly permeated my brain).
A beautiful thing: well, no, a crappy thing followed by beauty.
I was driving to CVS to get a prescription after work. And that took two hours. Whole lotta stupid. I got home and needed to eat something sort of easy and soul curing.
Leftover mashed potatoes were an awesome comfort food licious starting point.
Then I thought of a poached egg, because when don’t I? Er, note to self, do a better job spraying the poach pal next time…
And thennnnnnnnn obviously so yes that hulking red thing. I thought “Hey eggs! Potatoes! That sounds like a proper English breakfast! Perhaps I’ll broil a tomato” (but you have to say it tom-ah-to)!
Because it is winter, and tomatoes are 1. less sweet so broiling sort of condenses the sweetness they have (though confession: this was a green tomato that I forgot about and let sit on the counter too long) and 2. cold, because everything is cold in the winter, and broiling makes them… not cold!
Got the nice blog pic and then I made it into an exquisite mess.