Adrienne was always determined to produce good tasting food that looked appetizing with as little fuss as possible. Duchess potatoes are those lovely little piped puffs of mashed potatoes with the crisped brown edges. They are a bit of a fiddle to make using a pastry bag.
To get the same taste and similar effect on the plate instead of piping the mashed potato Adrienne dropped them onto a baking sheet with a teaspoon. Or you can spread the mashed potato mix in a shallow baking pan or casserole, making sure to create lots of peaks, drizzle with the melted butter and bake for 10 minutes and, voila, mashed potatoes with a twist!
The eggs are the difference between Duchess potatoes and regular, though lovely, mashed potatoes. They give them the lightness and puff that is their signature characteristic.
- 1 1/2 lbs Russet or Yukon Gold potatoes peeled and cut into chunks
- 2 large egg yolks
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 4 tbsp. butter, softened
- 4 tbsp. clarified butter*
- Salt & Pepper
- Place the potatoes in a saucepan. Cover with cold water and 1 tsp salt. Bring to a boil and cook until fork tender. Drain and return to the pan over low flame dry the potatoes until they leave a film on the bottom of the pan.
- Preheat oven to 400 F. Puree the cooked potatoes through a ricer or mouli while still hot. Mix in the egg yolks one at a time, then the softened butter and the cream. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Using a teaspoon or serving spoon dollop the potatoes on a baking sheet making sure that the tops of each spoonful is uneven and has an irregular surface (or spread in a shallow pan, again creating lots of irregular peaks). Drizzle with the clarified butter. The dish can be done to this point. Place the sheet pan in the fridge until you are ready to bake in the oven.
- Remove from the fridge approximately 30 minutes before baking. Bake for 10 minutes until browned (use the broiler option in the last 2-3 minutes if the top is not browning). Serve immediately.
- *Clarified butter – measure 5 tbsp. butter into a microwave safe container. Heat until melted. Pour off and use the clear liquid which is the clarified butter. The milk solids at the bottom can be discarded.
Serves 4 Prep/Cook time: 45 minutes