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Super Seconds: “Mash” Hits!

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The holidays are here and if you’re like us, there’s probably an armada of storage containers filling the fridge with what remains of recent gatherings. Typically, we are laden with pounds of leftover mashed white, red, russet or sweet potatoes. Rather than pitch these fabulous starches, or reheat daily into repetitious contempt, why not renew them with a few simple ingredients? After all, a big part of the prep is already done! Here, we present three recipes to inspire you when making “super seconds,” including a zesty Sweet Potato Coconut-Curry Soup, classic Potato Pancakes and a beginner’s Potato Soufflé. Enjoy the encore!

For leftover yams or sweet potatoes:

Sweet Potato Coconut-Curry Soup

Serves 4

A great way to transition your traditional sweet potato fare to something slightly spicy with international flare. For a milder kick, reduce the red curry paste to just one teaspoon. With a thick soup in mind, know that you can increase the liquids to thin it out later! If you are using cooked but un-mashed tubers, you can add them to the soup in chunks and use an immersion blender to produce a smooth, uniform texture. Don’t worry if your tubers were sweetened up for the first meal (with honey, brown sugar or marshmallows), they’ll meld just fine in this forgiving, flexible recipe!

Ingredients:

  • 3 c of cooked, mashed sweet potato or yam meat (no skin)
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, rough-chopped
  • 1 thumb-size piece of ginger root, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp red curry paste
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1 (15 oz) can of coconut milk (unsweetened)
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 c chopped cilantro (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat, add ginger and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring until tender.
  2. Stir in curry paste, let cook 1 minute in mixture.
  3. Whisk in coconut milk and broth, bringing all to a boil, and reduce heat to a simmer for 5 minutes.
  4. Add in leftover mashed yams or sweet potatoes. Whisk until blended and let simmer another 10 minutes.
  5. Season the soup with salt; add more to taste.
  6. Ladle into bowls and garnish with cilantro, if desired.

For leftover mashed potatoes

Potato Pancakes

Serves 4

 

Although popular at breakfast, this classic dish can slip into any meal period, and it’s very easy to make. Top with whatever you’d want on a hash brown: sour cream, gravy, salsa, ketchup, a fried egg or just salt and pepper!

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 c grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 c chopped fresh chives
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 c of cold mashed potatoes
  • 1/2 c of all-purpose flour, divided
  • 2 tbsp olive oil, divided
  • Sour cream, for serving (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Combine Parmesan cheese, chives and egg in a mixing bowl.
  2. Add all the mashed potatoes and 1/4 cup of the all-purpose flour until blended. Refrigerate for 10 minutes.
  3. Divide the potato mixture into 8 equal portions, then shape into 3-inch diameter patties.
  4. In a shallow dish, dredge each patty in the remaining 1/4 cup of flour and place on a baking sheet or dish so they’re ready to fry.
  5. In a cast iron or nonstick pan (min. 10-inch diameter), evenly coat with some olive oil and place over medium-high heat until glistening. Gently spatula-transfer four of the patties into the pan and cook 3 minutes per side until golden-brown and crisp.
  6. Transfer to warming oven, preferably on a broiler pan with rack so pancakes stay crisp.
  7. Repeat process with remaining patties.
  8. Salt and pepper to taste, serve warm, and top as desired with sour cream.

Potato Soufflé

Serves four as a side dish

Once you realize how easy this is to prepare, you’ll love this dish as a second act forever. Many people fear deflating a classic soufflé, but the starchiness of the potato makes it tougher to fail, especially if you’ve properly stiffened your egg white peaks. Another tip: Do not delay getting this dish from the oven to the table for peak perkiness! You’ll need an eight-inch oval, shallow gratin dish for this recipe.

Ingredients

  • Unsalted butter for the serving dish
  • 1/4 cup fine dry breadcrumbs, plain or herbed
  • 1 cup of leftover mashed potatoes
  • 2 large eggs, separated
  • 3 T Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed garlic
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • Salt and pepper
  • Freshly grated nutmeg to taste (pre-ground can substitute)

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Butter an 8 inch-long, shallow oval gratin dish. Dust the bottom in bread crumbs and set aside.
  3. In a mixing bowl, whisk the potatoes, egg yolks (only the yolks!), cream, Parmesan cheese and garlic until creamy and well combined. Season with salt and pepper, and set the potato mixture aside.
  4. In another bowl with a mixer and whisk attachment or an egg beater, add a pinch of salt to 2 egg whites and whip on medium speed until the whites are glossy and stiff.
  5. Using a rubber spatula, fold the beaten egg whites into the potato mixture. Gently transfer the mixture into the prepared gratin dish and bake for about 40 minutes until golden and fluffy.
  6. Top it off with a little sprinkled nutmeg and serve immediately.

Eat, eat again and be merry knowing these encores might just become reason enough to make extra yams and potatoes the first time around!