|Herbed Mashed Potatoes with Boursin|
Instead of traveling, we are sticking close to home and working on our own turf. We have a 118-year-old carriage barn that needs some major attention. It's not a big barn - about the size of a garage - and it's rather charming, but it's old. I'd like to build a greenhouse on the back of it, but that might have to wait for another year. We'll see.
We're also involved in some inexpensive but time-consuming projects around the kitchen and other parts of the house. We're about a quarter through our to-do list: The book room is done, the new shower head is installed upstairs and the powder room has a new faucet. But when you have a house, especially a old house, the work is never done.
Traveling has made me extremely frugal around the house, especially in the kitchen. I keep thinking of the conversation I heard on Boulevard St. Michel two years ago. Two American women were talking about another family, when one said, "They live simply so they can travel more often."
That's become my credo. So when I splurged on but did not finish a small package of Boursin, and then noticed I had some redskin potatoes to use up, I tried something new. New for us, that is.
It's "new" because when it comes to the basics, my husband is a purist. When he wants mashed potatoes, he wants potatoes, maybe a little milk or cream, and butter. I want onions, chives and parsley.
So I made this in advance, and gave Mr. Frenchtown Kitchen a taste before Saturday supper. He liked it! I served it with roasted chicken and green beans amandine.
Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes with Boursin and Herbs
- 8-10 small to medium red potatoes
- 5.2-ounce package Boursin Cheese (I used shallot and chive flavored Boursin)
- 2 Tablespoons half and half
- 2 teaspoons fresh garlic chives, chopped
- dash dried or fresh parsley
- sash sea salt and freshly-ground pepper
Drain the potatoes. Mash with a hand-held potato masher, adding Boursin and half-and-half gradually. Next add chives, parsley and seasonings. You could certainly use a hand-held electric mixer or a whip (add more half-and-half) for really smooth potatoes, but I prefer a more rustic approach, something a bit chunkier so I used only a fork.
I covered my bowl, popped it in the refrigerator and reheated in the microwave when the chicken was finished roasting and the green beans were ready.
Sheer comfort food. Since we've had a cool and rainy week in northern Wisconsin, this comfort food really hit the spot.