When I saw that Jen had challenged us to work with potatoes this month for Kitchen Bootcamp, I knew immediately what I wanted to make. Lately, I have been craving little golden baked puffs of potato-ey perfection – I was reading a vintage cookbook and came across a picture and it brought me back to the 1970s dinner parties my mum and dad used to throw with all sorts of fancy eats like Duchess Potatoes. Chapter 26 of The Professional Chef does, indeed include instructions for these but I felt I might modernise them a little by making flattened discs of potato rather than fancy schmancy piped out ones. They didn’t exactly come out as elegant as I had hoped so I dubbed them “Baroness” potatoes – a Baroness being the lowest rank of nobility at the opposite end of the scale from the Duchess.
"Baroness" potatoes (aka the poor cousin of the Duchess)
A rustic version of the classic Duchess potato.
- 1 pound potatoes, peeled and cut into even sized cubes
- 3 tablespoons whipping (heavy) cream
- 2 tablespoons butter, room temperature
- 1 egg yolk
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
- salt and freshly ground pepper
- Heat oven to 400˚F.
- Line a baking tray with parchment paper.
- Place potatoes in a medium saucepan and just cover with cold water.
- Over a high heat, bring to a boil and then lower temperature and simmer the potatoes until they are fork-tender (20-30 minutes)
- Drain the potatoes then either using a food mill, a ricer or a not-too-fine sieve, push the hot potatoes through so they are fluffy.
- Add in the cream, the room temperature butter and egg yolk and mix until just combined and smooth.
- Place the potato mixture in a piping bag and pipe small balls of the mix onto the baking tray.
- Flatten the balls into small discs (they should be about 3cm across) using either your thumb or the back of a fork.
- Brush discs with the melted butter, making sure to coat both sides.
- Bake for 15 minutes, then flip the discs over and return tray to oven for a further 15 minutes until crispy and golden brown.
- Sprinkle with salt and pepper and serve immediately, either as a side dish or simply with ketchup.
Yeah ok – these were pretty rustic looking but I actually really liked the taste. Hot out of the oven they were crispy on the outside and light fluffy on the inside. The only thing is, they didn’t re-heat so well so if you make them, plan on eating them all 😉 I’ll definitely make these again because I loved their clumsy elegance. Sometimes, you know, there’s no place for a Duchess at the dinner table.
Want to join us working through the chapters of The Professional Chef? Check out the Kitchen Bootcamp page here and buy The Professional Chef on Amazon.ca or Amazon.com or, for free worldwide shipping, buy from The Book Depository!