Thursday, November 22, 2007

mashed potatoes

Don't be afraid of the mashed potatoes today, and maybe you should have just a smidgen of gravy.

You can shed the worries about those last 10 pounds that just don't seem to want to leave.

A new study released this month finds that being a little overweight isn't going to kill you. At least not immediately.


The report analyzed data from two years ago, when government scientists first dared to suggest that maybe deaths from being too fat were overstated.

The new study looked at specific causes of death and used new mortality figures to determine that "excess weight does not uniformly increase the rise of mortality from any and every cause, but only from certain causes."

That was a quote from Katherine Flegal of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and lead author of the study, which analyzed the body mass index of people who died from various diseases.

Being 30 pounds overweight still is considered obese, and the risk of that much extra weight on a body is nothing to laugh about.

Diabetes, kidney disease, heart disease and many cancers are all more likely for people who are obese - but those of us struggling with 10 or 15 pounds of stubborn excess aren't as likely to be at high risk.

There's no doubt that too many people are overweight to a degree that inhibits their general health - you only have to walk through a shopping mall to notice the public's increasing girth.

But it's nice to know that a few extra pounds won't mean a shorter life.
your Thanksgiving will call for serious quantities of mashed potatoes, it's time to get serious about how you mash them.

An Angled Potato Ricer, $29.95 from Williams-Sonoma, is for serious mashed potatoes, and lots of them. Using a ricer creates fluffier and lighter potatoes, because the vegetable is forced through tiny holes. - LARRY CROWE / AP

Or rather, how you rice them. As real mashed potato fans know, the fluffiest, lightest mashed potatoes are produced without any real mashing, and certainly not by using a traditional masher.
For the best mashed potatoes, a potato ricer is called for. These handheld tools extrude the cooked potatoes through tiny holes, forcing air into them and creating fluffy "grains" of potato.
But this can be laborious, in part because most ricers are small and flimsy. Now Williams-Sonoma has a new, oversized, heavy-duty ricer that quickly handles mounds of potatoes.
Though folks with tiny kitchens will find the Deluxe Angled Potato Ricer a bit of a space hog (it's 15 inches long), it is space well used for seriously good mashed potatoes.
quarter the potatoes. Place them in a large stock pot with enough cold water to cover by at least an inch. Over high heat, bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer and cook the potatoes until the pieces are easily pierced with a knife, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and drain.

2. While the potatoes are still hot, run them through a food mill or ricer into a large bowl. Add the butter, buttermilk, milk and sour cream and season with 1 teaspoon salt and one-fourth teaspoon pepper, or to taste. Serve immediately.

Each serving: 197 calories; 3 grams protein; 25 grams carbohydrates; 2 grams fiber; 10 grams fat; 6 grams saturated fat; 24 mg. cholesterol; 266 mg. sodiumA little Thanksgiving humor, brought to you by the 2nd graders at the elementary school in regard to Turkey cooking time and how long to cook a Thanksgiving Turkey.

When asked how to prepare a turkey dinner, a class of 2nd graders provided the following strategies:

- Get a turkey from the store. Put it in the microwave. Cook it for four minutes. Feel it to see if it's hot or cold. Have potatoes. Put them in the oven for a little bit, like 3 minutes. Have those crunchy sticks filled with chocolate for dessert. Have some drinks, like milk and water. That's a lot of stuff.

- First you go and buy the turkey from the store. Put it in the oven. Set the oven at 400 degrees. Cook it for an hour. Make mashed potatoes. To make gravy, put the mix and some water in a pan. Have sparkling cider. Set the table with plates, napkins and silverware.

- Stuff the turkey with stuffing. Stuffing is made of green onions and small pieces of potatoes, and some green stuff. Green pepper, maybe? That's pretty much how my mom makes the stuffing. Put it in the stove for at least four or five minutes. Make mashed potatoes with gravy, biscuits, and this dessert. I think it's called crab cake. We usually have Sprite for soda, but my sisters like orange Kool-Aid.

- Make mashed potatoes and rolls. Put the turkey in an oven. Set it at nine degrees. It takes like half an hour to cook. Make more food, like hot dogs and sausage. Get a tablecloth and set the table. Have cherry pie for dessert. That's MY favorite dessert.

- Put it in the oven. Leave it sit for awhile, like 20 minutes. The oven should be at 15 degrees. Make mashed potatoes, rice, and chicken. Have water to drink. Decorate your house with Thanksgiving lights. Maybe you could have pop to drink.

- Hunt the turkey, or buy it. Put it in water. Put some lemons in it. Take it out. Dry it (of course). Grill it in the stove for half an hour on "Medium." Put the stuffing in it. Make it out of rice and Russian meat. Put some Russian mayonnaise on it. Put it in the turkey. Put it on the plate and put it on the table. Have some pyrogies and potatoes. Have cake for dessert. And ice cream. Decorate your house with turkeys.

- You need to go get the turkey at the store. Stuff it with stuffing. If you don't have stuffing, use potatoes. Have some fruit and vegetables, like broccoli, cauliflower, celery and carrots. Lettuce, too. You should have some meat, like roast beef, steak and salt horse. Have something to drink, like water and wine. Beer, too. Put some candles up.

- Put the turkey in a pan. Turn the stove on kind of in the middle, like 20 degrees. Start cooking the turkey. Cook it for five minutes. Make stuffing, and pumpkin pie. Make the stuffing out of tomatoes. Make Jell-O. You should put chocolate chips in the pumpkin pie. Put whipped cream on it.

- Go to a store to find a turkey. Put it in a pan and cook it up for thirty or four minutes. Set the oven at "Hot-Hot." Make stuffing. Get some rice and get some meat and mix it up. Make a roast. It's easy. Get some potatoes, carrots and put the roast in the middle. Have a smoothie for dessert. Get a cornucopia for the center of the table. Decorate your chairs with ribbons.

- Cook it on the stove. Heat the stove up so the turkey can cook. Heat it up to 20 degrees. It takes 20 minutes. Get the mashed potatoes ready. Cook the gravy for it. It's made from salt, water and brown dye. Have cranberries, sweet mashed potatoes, and some biscuits. Have pumpkin pie for dessert. Be sure to have some butter for the biscuits.

- You should go to Safeway to get a turkey. Cook it on the stove. Turn it on to really, really hot, like 50 degrees. It takes three and a half hours to cook. Make something to eat with it, like green bean casserole and mashed potatoes.

- Okay. Put it in the oven for about half an hour. Set the oven on "Medium." If that doesn't work out, try "Low." Make cranberry sauce. Take a piece of turkey and dunk it in cranberry sauce. It tastes really good. Make mashed potatoes and gravy. Gravy is made out of salt and powder. Mix them both together and put a lot of hot water in them. Put it on the stove for about 5-20 minutes. The setting is on "Low." It's been a long time since I made a turkey dinner. The pie that my family loves is cranberry pie. Take the cranberries. Take that thing that you mash potatoes. Be sure to wash it first, of course. Mash them until they're a liquid. Let them sit for a little while in the fridge, until they're semi-cold. Make the dough. Take it and put it in a pie-shaped pan. Take the cranberry sauce out and pour it in until it's semi-full. Do some more dough on top and pop it in the oven for an hour. Set it on "Medium." Drinks. My family loves pop and apple juice. We make that ourselves. Take some apples. Take the stem out. Smash the apples. Let it sit in the fridge to make it semi-cold, like the cranberries. Pour the juice into the bowl. Put a couple of doses of sugar in. Mix them all together. Sip it. When it tastes really sweet, make a couple of jugs of it. We like biscuits, too. If it doesn't work out, it's because I haven't made dinner in a long time.

- You need to get a turkey. Cook it in the oven for 13 minutes. Cook mashed potatoes and salad. Dust some things before the company comes over, and put some flowers on the table. - Find a turkey in the forest. Shoot it. Bake it for half an hour. Make corn, mashed potatoes, and stuffing. It's made out of bread and vegetables. Set the table. Have pumpkin pie and ice cream for dessert.

- You can buy a turkey or you can hunt for a turkey. Put stuffing in it. Stuffing is cotton balls. It's squishy. You can put it in the oven. Set the oven at 20 degrees. Cook it for half an hour. Make mashed potatoes, rice, and rolls. You can set up the table. Put all the dishes on the table so they're all ready. Take the turkey out of the oven. It's done when it's white-brown and dark brown. Taste it and see if it's delicious.

- Buy a turkey. Go home and cook it for a minimum of 10 minutes. The oven should be… not that cold. Put the stove on "Hot," about 10 degrees Fahrenheit. Make potatoes, gravy and corn. When you cook it, don't put it on "Boiling Hot."

- You should find a turkey at a farm. Kill it, and skin it. Cut all the fat off of it. Slice it up, and then you can eat it. But first you have to warm it up. Warm it up in the microwave for about one minute. Make the table and take the turkey out. Make the sauce to go on it… gravy! Have buns frosted with icing. Maybe make some beans and corn, too.

- Go buy a turkey at the store. Pay for it. Take it home and put it in the oven. But first make a hole in it and get out all the yucky blood. Put the stuff that you eat in the hole. It's made with bread. The colors can be green or yellow or brown. Stuffing! Put it in the oven for an hour or four hours. Set it at 6 degrees. When it's done and it beeps, take it out. Let it cool. You should make turnips, mashed potatoes, and gravy. Gravy is made out of cinnamon. Have Mashed potato
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This article is about the food. For other uses, see Mashed potato (disambiguation).

Mashed potatoes.
Decorated mashed potatoes, Schynige Platte.Mashed potato (mashed potatoes and sometimes called smashed potato) is a common way of serving potato in many countries worldwide. It is made by mashing boiled potatoes (peeled or unpeeled) with a potato ricer or similar device. Sometimes other ingredients such as milk, cream, butter, vegetable oil, garlic, cheese, bacon bits or sour cream are added. A French variation adds egg yolk for Pommes duchesse that is piped through a pastry tube into wavy ribbons and rosettes, brushed with butter and lightly browned.

Many cooks[attribution needed] feel that making the dish successfully is dependent on first returning the boiled (and drained) potatoes to the empty pot and heating them to drive off surplus steam but others[attribution needed] feel that this is an unnecessary step.

The success of the dish is a matter of opinion. Some hold that potatoes mashed or smashed with a fork have the true texture of the genuine mashed potato. Some say potato cells are damaged during violent processing such as in a food processor because the starch (freed from the cells, which become swollen during cooking) makes puréed mashed potato very sticky. Others say that passing the boiled potato through a ricer or food mill produces a desired refined texture. Other ways of making them include using a hand implement that actually mashes them in the pot or using an electric mixer (not a blender) to mix them into whipped potatoes. Another key factor in the success of mashed potatoes is whether or not to make them lumpy or smooth. Some prefer them lumpy to add a little more substance to the dish, but others prefer smooth so they can focus entirely on the taste.[attribution needed] It's also a practice in some cases to include the skins.

Not all varieties of potato are equally suitable for mashing, the best being floury varieties rather than the waxy types used as salad potatoes. If the latter are used, they will require thorough cooking and mashing or the dish will end up containing small potato chunks.

Mashed potato is also an ingredient of various other dishes, including Shepherds' pie, Colcannon and potato croquettes.

In addition to butter, cream, or milk, mashed potato may also be seasoned with salt, pepper (often white pepper, to blend in), and/or a dash of nutmeg. In some countries, other spices may be added for more flavor, e.g. a variety of common kitchen herbs. A white turnip cooked and mashed with the potatoes in a proportion of about 1:10, provides a slight "bite" preferred by some. Alternatively, a little garlic may be cooked with it. Another option is to blend in wasabi powder to taste. This works well as a side dish for tuna steaks. In low-calorie recipes that forego the addition of milk, cream, or butter/margarine; soup stock or broth can be used as flavoring. In the U.S., mashed potatoes are often covered with gravy. In London, mashed potato is sold in pie and mash shops. It is often served with sausage, in this form being called bangers and mash.

In many American households, the top of each serving is hollowed with a spoon in order to form a gravy and/or butter "volcano crater".

Dehydrated instant mashed potato mixes are also available, as well as frozen varieties. A campaign for one such product (Smash) memorably launched the business of advertising agency Boase Massimi Pollitt.


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