Posts Tagged 'robuchon'

Spuds “á la Robuchon”

Purée de pomme de terre

Every renowned chef has their signature dish. Gordon Ramsay has his “Ravioli of lobster, langoustine and salmon” and Heston Bulmenthal his “Bacon & Egg ice-cream with snail porridge”. Funnily, despite Joël Robuchon’s legendary status (he once ran two 3 Michelin star restaurants in Paris; beat that, Gordo…), the dish a lot of people associate him with is his mashed potatoes. This is no ordinary mash – it’s sinfully rich and made with equal parts potato and butter. It sounds very heavy, but served in small quantities is actually quite light because of the way it’s whipped.

I’ve read so much  about this mash on blogs and foodies mags and I finally got to try it last year at L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon in Las Vegas.  It was wicked.  Coincidentally, I came across a recipe for the mash in one of the books I was reading at the time, “Doing without Delia” by Michael Booth (a very funny read, by the way). I think I’d feel too guilty about preparing food like this in my own kitchen, so in a strange (and somewhat lazy) move, I’m passing on this recipe to you without having tried it myself. I’ll get around to it one day and let you all know… 😉

For this recipe, it’s important to use a potato ricer, a utensil similar to a large garlic press. Only a ricer will give you the smooth result you’re looking for. If you attempt this with a food processor or a regular potato masher, you will overwork the potato and end up with sticky, gluey mash.

Here’s Michael Booth’s recipe:

Ingredients

  • 1kg potatoes
  • 1kg butter (chilled & unsalted)
  • salt
  • 100ml whole milk

Method

  1. Wash the potatoes and cut into large chunks. Simmer gently in water until potatoes are tender. Add a generous amount of salt half way through cooking.
  2. Allow the potatoes to cool a little, then peel. Push the potatoes through a ricer, then through a fine sieve to get a very smooth result.
  3. Cut the chilled butter into large chunks. Heat the milk in a large saucepan add the riced potatoes. Stir vigorously to prevent burning. Add each piece of butter separately and wait until the butter has melted before adding another. When all of the butter has been incorporated into the potato, whip the potatoes vigorously with a whisk.
  4. You can add a little more butter or milk if the mash dries out slightly before serving.

Further Reading

  • Gordon Ramsay’s “Truffle oil pomme purée” – roughly the same idea, but lent some luxury with the addition of a litle truffle oil.
  • Cooking For My Wife “Joël Robuchon’s pommes purée” – another food blogger who tasted the famous mash in L’Atelier and was sufficiently impressed to re-create the dish using tips gleaned from eGullet.
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